31 May 2023

SBC Works! “É tic-tac, e já está!” – COVID-19 vaccine demand generation among adolescents (12-17 years old)

In September 2022, adolescents (12-17 years old) were included in the COVID-19 vaccination program in Mozambique. The Government of Mozambique has administrated two doses of the Pfizer vaccine in schools, health facilities, and communities. However, at the time, COVID-19 vaccination was not considered a top priority among adolescents in Mozambique due to the improvement of the epidemiologic situation, the lifting of COVID-19 containment measures (the Government announced the end of the public emergency in April 2022), and the decreased media coverage of COVID-19 narratives and associated stories. To understand the drivers and barriers to COVID-19 vaccine uptake among adolescents, UNICEF Mozambique conducted three studies based on the Behavioural and Social Drivers (BeSD) WHO- UNICEF tool. The results detected that while risk perception (89 per cent) and willingness (72-74 per cent) among adolescents to get the COVID-19 vaccine were relatively high, a large proportion expressed mistrust (40-58 per cent) on COVID-19 vaccines safety in the qualitative component of the research (SMS Biz/U- Report, N=3600; BeSD Study, N=98; PENSA Quick Survey, N=131). Considering this challenging situation, UNICEF Mozambique supported the Ministry of Health in designing and implementing an evidence-informed COVID-19 vaccination campaign strategy to increase demand and uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine among adolescents (12-17 years old). May 2023
30 May 2023

SBC Works! Partnership with Tanzania Association of the Deaf (CHAVITA) to Promote COVID-19 Vaccine Demand among People with Special Needs

The deaf population is a linguistic minority, using sign language as their primary mode of communication. Because of their disability, most deaf people lack formal education, therefore it is hard for them to access the common oral COVID-19 vaccine messages which are transmitted through formal awareness channels such as televisions and radios, which are not always inclusive enough. The COVID-19 pandemic outbreak revealed communication gaps in the health sector, as many people with hearing impairments in hospitals did not have a consistent way to communicate with doctors and staff. The lack of sign language interpreters and the use of masks created additional barriers for deaf persons. Masks reduce access to mouth movement and facial expression, leading to miscommunication and increasing feelings of frustration and isolation. Due to the inaccessibility of the available information and communication barriers with health workers, the deaf population in Tanzania is more likely to miss out on vaccination and other preventative measures, and therefore even more vulnerable to COVID-19 infection.  To reach and engage people with disabilities (PWD), especially with hearing impairments with COVID-19 information and prevention measures particularly vaccine uptake, UNICEF Tanzania in partnership with the Tanzania Association of the Deaf (CHAVITA) implemented the “COVID-19 Vaccine Demand Promotion: Improved Awareness and Confidence on COVID-19 preventive measures including the deaf population in Tanzania” programme in three regions of Tanzania (Arusha, Mwanza and Mbeya) for 6 months in 2022. May 2023