Electoral and religious correlates of COVID-19 vaccination rates in Dutch municipalities


Vaccination campaigns amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic have been extensively politicized in a number of countries. Controlling for a number of demographic, social and economic factors, we find a negative statistical relationship between the aggregate vote share of the populist-right wing Forum for Democracy and the vaccination rate against COVID-19 across Dutch municipalities. We also find a negative relationship between the proportion of individuals with reformed Protestant and Muslim religious beliefs. These relationships can possibly be related to religious worldviews or mistrust towards authority. These results show that the politicization of health behaviours can have detrimental effects on public health campaigns.

European Journal of Public Health. 2022 Nov 29;32(6):985-987. doi: 10.1093/eurpub/ckac112