Canadians Divided Over Vaccine Rollout and Expectations

Fewer than one-in-four respondents believe the vaccines developed in Russia, China and India are safe for them.

Vancouver, BC [February 4, 2021] – Canadians are split on the notion that every resident of the country who wants to have a vaccine against COVID-19 will be able to get one in the timeline specified by the federal government, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In December 2020, the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) stated that it expected to have enough COVID-19 vaccine doses to inoculate every willing Canadian by the end of September 2021.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 45% of Canadians believe this goal will be attained, while 46% think it will not be attained.

“More than half of Canadians aged 18-to-34 (53%) expect everyone in the country to be vaccinated in the next eight months,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “Fewer Canadians aged 35-to-54 (46%) and aged 55 and over (37%) have the same optimism.”

About three-in-four Canadians (74%) say they would take a vaccine against COVID-19 if one ultimately becomes available to them, while 18% would not and 8% are undecided. These proportions are consistent with what Research Co. has found in surveys conducted in September 2020November 2020 and January 2021.

Canadians are divided in their assessment of various aspects of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. While 46% say they are satisfied with the procurement of vaccine doses from the federal government, 43% are not.

Canadians who supported the Conservative Party in the 2019 election are particularly critical of the federal government, with 65% saying they are dissatisfied with the procurement of vaccine doses—compared to 44% for those who voted for the New Democratic Party (NDP) and 30% for those who voted for the Liberal Party.

More than half of Canadians (51%) are satisfied with the vaccination plans and phases outlined by their province. 

While majorities of residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba (57%), British Columbia (56%), Atlantic Canada (54%) and Quebec (53%) are satisfied with this aspect of the vaccine rollout, the proportion is lower in Ontario (45%) and Alberta (42%).

Across the country, 41% of Canadians say they are satisfied with the pace of vaccination efforts in their province, 49% are dissatisfied. 

The level of satisfaction with the pace of vaccination efforts is highest in Quebec (46%), followed by British Columbia (45%), Atlantic Canada (42%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (40%), Alberta (37%) and Ontario (34%).

Health authorities around the world have allowed the emergency use of nine vaccines against COVID-19. When this survey was conducted, Canada had only allowed two vaccines: the Pfizer–BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine and the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. 

More than two thirds of Canadians consider the Moderna (69%) and Pfizer (67%) vaccines as “safe” for them personally. These two vaccines are considered “not safe” by 12% and 15% of Canadians respectively.

Almost half of Canadians (48%) feel the Oxford-Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccine is “safe” for them personally, while 16% consider it “not safe” and 35% are not sure.

Fewer than one-in-four Canadians deem six other vaccines as “safe” for them: the KeeGam-COVID-Vac (Sputnik V) from Russia (20%), the EpiVacCorona from Russia (also 20%), the BBV152 (Varat Biotech) from India (also 20%), the CoronaVac (Sinovac) from China (18%), the Ad5-nCoV (Cansino Biologics) from China (17%) and the BBIBP-CorV (Sinopharm) from China (15%).

Results are based on an online survey conducted from January 30 to February 1, 2021, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.