UMMS Affiliation

Department of Family Medicine and Community Health

Publication Date


Document Type



Family Medicine | Health Services Administration | Infectious Disease | Pediatrics | Primary Care | Public Health Education and Promotion | Virus Diseases


OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to examine the perspectives of primary care physicians in Texas around vaccine acceptance and potential patient barriers to vaccination. National surveys have shown fluctuating levels of acceptance for COVID-19 vaccination, and primary care physicians could play a crucial role in increasing vaccine uptake.

DESIGN: This study employed a cross-sectional anonymous survey design to collect data using an online questionnaire. Participants were asked about vaccination practices and policies at their practice site, perceptions of patient and community acceptance and confidence in responding to patient vaccine concerns.

SETTING: From November 2020 to January 2021, family medicine physicians and paediatricians completed an online questionnaire on COVID-19 vaccination that was distributed by professional associations.

PARTICIPANTS: The survey was completed by 573 practising physicians, the majority of whom identified as family medicine physicians (71.0%) or paediatricians (25.7%), who are currently active in professional associations in Texas.

RESULTS: About three-fourths (74.0%) of participants reported that they would get the vaccine as soon as it became available. They estimated that slightly more than half (59.2%) of their patients would accept the vaccine, and 67.0% expected that the COVID-19 vaccine would be accepted in their local community. The majority of participants (87.8%) reported always, almost always or usually endorsing vaccines, including high levels of intention to recommend COVID-19 vaccination (81.5%). Participants felt most confident responding to patient concerns related to education about vaccine types, safety and necessity and reported least confidence in responding to personal or religious objections to COVID-19 vaccination.

CONCLUSIONS: The majority of the physicians surveyed stated that they would receive the COVID-19 vaccination when it was available to them and were confident in their ability to respond to patient concerns. With additional education, support and shifting COVID-19 vaccinations into primary care settings, primary care physicians can use the trust they have built with their patients to address vaccine hesitancy and potentially increase acceptance and uptake.


COVID-19, family medicine, pediatrics, vaccination refusal

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© Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2021. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ. This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited, appropriate credit is given, any changes made indicated, and the use is non-commercial. See:

DOI of Published Version



Day P, Strenth C, Kale N, Schneider FD, Arnold EM. Perspectives of primary care physicians on acceptance and barriers to COVID-19 vaccination. Fam Med Community Health. 2021 Nov;9(4):e001228. doi: 10.1136/fmch-2021-001228. PMID: 34740897; PMCID: PMC8573291. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Family medicine and community health

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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License