‘We’re at war.’ Healthcare workers’ experience with organisational change, uncertainty and vaccine hesitancy in 2021 and 2022 during the COVID-19 vaccination programe in Poland.

Publication date: Mar 28, 2024

This article analyses the organisation of the mass COVID-19 vaccination programme in Poland and its consequences for various aspects of the social identity of healthcare workers (HCWs). Based on 31 in-depth interviews with HCWs, our study reveals the following: (1) Certain elements of the programme (inclusion of other healthcare professionals like pharmacists and laboratory diagnosticians as vaccinators) and the provision of additional infrastructure (pharmacies and shopping malls) may prompt scepticism and criticism in physicians and nurses who feel challenged about their professional autonomy and hierarchies; (2) Given the high levels of professional uncertainty, the implementation of the COVID-19 vaccination is forcing HCWs to revise their attitude to medical standards, resulting in specific responses and adaptation strategies (ranging from the active involvement in the programme due to the sense of mission, to more or less evident scepticism); and (3) Confronting vaccine hesitancy, both among patients and other HCWs, contributes to the feeling of helplessness, leading to criticism of policymakers.

Concepts Keywords
Malls Covid‐19
Nurses COVID‐19 vaccine hesitancy
Poland professional autonomy
Scepticism professional uncertainty
Vaccine vaccination programme


Type Source Name
disease MESH uncertainty
disease VO vaccine
disease MESH COVID-19
disease VO vaccination

Original Article

(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)