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Addressing Vaccine Hesitancy Using Local Ambassadors: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Indonesia

Author

Listed:
  • Islam, Asad

    (Monash University)

  • Kusnadi, Gita

    (CISDI)

  • Rezki, Jahen

    (University of Indonesia)

  • Sim, Armand

    (Monash University)

  • van Empel, Giovanni

    (Monash University)

  • Vlassopoulos, Michael

    (University of Southampton)

  • Zenou, Yves

    (Monash University)

Abstract

In settings where resistance and rampant misinformation against vaccines exist, the prospect of containing infectious diseases remains a challenge. Can delivery of information regarding the benefits of vaccination through personal home visits by local ambassadors increase vaccine uptake? We conduct a door-to-door randomized information campaign targeted towards COVID-19 unvaccinated individuals in rural Indonesia. We recruited ambassadors from local villages tasked to deliver information about COVID-19 vaccines and promote vaccination through one-on-one meetings, using an interpersonal behavioral change communication approach. To investigate which type of ambassador—health cadres, influential individuals, and laypersons—is the most effective, we randomly vary the type of ambassador that delivers the information at the village level. We find that the overall vaccination take-up is quite moderate and that there are no differences in vaccination outcomes across the treatment groups. These results highlight the challenge of boosting vaccine uptake in late stages of a pandemic.

Suggested Citation

  • Islam, Asad & Kusnadi, Gita & Rezki, Jahen & Sim, Armand & van Empel, Giovanni & Vlassopoulos, Michael & Zenou, Yves, 2023. "Addressing Vaccine Hesitancy Using Local Ambassadors: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Indonesia," IZA Discussion Papers 15899, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp15899
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    misinformation; health behaviors; vaccine hesitancy; Indonesia; COVID-19;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I3 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty

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