Development, Implementation and Evaluation of a Vaccine Confidence Digital App for Young Adults

Lear, Scott A | $183,727

British Columbia St. Paul's Hospital 2021 CIHR Operating Grant

Young adults (aged 18 to 29 years) have had the highest proportion of COVID‑19 cases during the pandemic. At the same time, they are also the adult age group with the highest proportion of those unvaccinated. National and provincial public health leaders have identified young adults as having the highest risk of transmission given their employment in public-facing jobs, social mobility and confined housing. In order to improve vaccination rates, we need to understand reasons why young adults may not be getting vaccinated and use this information to develop and implement vaccination interventions for this age group. This proposal will work closely with young adults through our Young Adult Advisory Group. Our first aim is to engage up to 30 young adults through interviews to understand their knowledge and attitudes towards vaccination. Our second aim is to further develop, and implement, a mobile app, STOP COVID!, designed to improve vaccine confidence and, ultimately, vaccination. STOP COVID! will be a game-based app aimed at changing behaviour intention (nudging) young adults towards vaccination. Content will be science-based and informed by the findings of the first aim so that STOP COVID! will be tailored to young adults. STOP COVID! will be implemented in restaurants and public transit throughout British Columbia, and promoted through social media. We will evaluate the implementation of STOP COVID! to understand in what context is the app effective, in whom and why. Special attention will be made across a range of genders, ethnicity, education and geography across BC. We anticipate STOP COVID! will improve vaccine confidence and uptake in young adults, and with our public health partners, spread to other provinces in the future.

With funding from the Government of Canada

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