Vaccine hesitancy and access to psoriasis care in the COVID-19 pandemic: findings from a global patient-reported cross-sectional survey

This research has not been peer-reviewed. It is a preliminary report that should not be regarded as conclusive, guide clinical practice or health-related behaviour, or be reported in news media as established information.


COVID-19 vaccination is efficacious at protecting against severe COVID-19 outcomes in the general population. However, vaccine hesitancy (unwillingness for vaccination despite available vaccination services) threatens public health. Individuals taking immunosuppression for psoriasis have been prioritised for COVID-19 vaccination, however there is a paucity of information on vaccine hesitancy in this population, including contributing factors. While global healthcare has been severely disrupted in the pandemic, the impact on access to psoriasis care and whether this may negatively influence vaccine uptake, is underexplored.


To explore organisational and individual factors associated with COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy in individuals with psoriasis. Methods: Individuals with psoriasis, identified through global patient organisations and social media, completed a cross-sectional self-reported online survey. The primary outcome was COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. Logistic regression was used to examine the association between predictor variables (organisational and individual factors) and outcome.


Self-reported data from 802 individuals with psoriasis across 89 countries were available (65.6% female, median age 51 years [IQR 37-61], 43.7% taking systemic immunosuppression). Eight percent (n=63) reported vaccine hesitancy. Those reporting vaccine hesitancy were younger, more likely to be of non-white ethnicity, non-UK resident, have a lower BMI, not taking systemic immunosuppression and with shorter disease duration compared to those not reporting vaccine hesitancy. The commonest reasons for vaccine hesitancy were concerns regarding vaccine side-effects, that the vaccine is too new or that psoriasis may worsen post-vaccination. Forty percent (n=322) reported that their psoriasis care had been disrupted by the pandemic. These individuals were younger, of non-white ethnicity, with shorter duration and more severe psoriasis. Disruption to psoriasis care was associated with vaccine hesitancy (unadjusted OR 2.97 (95%CI 1.23-7.13), p=0.015), although not statistically significant in the adjusted model.


A minority of individuals with psoriasis from our study reported COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy. Similar to general population trends, vaccine hesitancy in our psoriasis sample is most common in younger age and ethnic minority groups. Our data highlight patient concerns regarding COVID-19 vaccination, which are important to address during patient-clinician interactions to help optimise vaccine uptake and mitigate risks from the ongoing pandemic in individuals with psoriasis.

Author list

K Bechman, ES Cook, N Dand, ZZN Yiu, T Tsakok, F Meynell, B Coker, A Vincent, H Bachelez, I Barbosa, MA Brown, F Capon, CR Contreras, C De La Cruz, P Di Meglio, P Gisondi, D Jullien, J Kelly, J Lambert, C Lancelot, SM Langan, KJ Mason, H McAteer, L Moorhead, L Naldi, S Norton, L Puig, P Spuls, T Torres, D Urmston, A Vesty, RB Warren, H Waweru, J Weinman, CEM Griffiths, JN Barker, CH Smith, JB Galloway, SK Mahil

Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2