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Vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks have increased in past years, and there is great public health interest in monitoring attitudes towards vaccination as well as identifying factors contributing to vaccine hesitancy and refusal. Although the WHO declared vaccine hesitancy as one of the top threats to global health in 2019, studies focused on the determinants and extent of vaccine hesitancy in Arab countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are lacking. This scoping review explores the various factors surrounding vaccine hesitancy, including but not limited to geographic, cultural and religious factors, and examines the extent and nature of the existing evidence on this topic. In light of current development of various COVID-19 vaccines, our work seeks to elucidate the barriers to vaccine uptake in specific populations. This review will be conducted using the Joanna Briggs Institute Manual for Scoping Reviews. It will comply with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Reviews guidelines. Studies published in English, Arabic and French between January 1998 and December 2020 will be drawn from PubMed, Embase, Cochrane and Scopus. The search strategy will include terms related to vaccination and vaccine hesitancy in Arab countries in the MENA region. We will also include grey literature on the topic by searching Google and Google Scholar. Studies will be selected according to the Participants-Intervention-Comparators-Outcome model, and all study titles and abstracts will be screened by two reviewers. Disagreements will be resolved with a third reviewer's input. This review is exempted from ethical approval and will be published in a peer-reviewed open-access journal to ensure wide dissemination. © Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2022. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.


Bayan Galal, Stefany Lazieh, Samir Al-Ali, Kaveh Khoshnood. Assessing vaccine hesitancy in Arab countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region: a scoping review protocol. BMJ open. 2022 Feb 11;12(2):e045348

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PMID: 35149559

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