Widespread vaccination against COVID-19 is critical for controlling the pandemic. Despite the development of safe and efficacious vaccinations, low-and lower-middle income countries (LMICs) continue to encounter barriers to care owing to inequitable access and vaccine apprehension. This study aimed to summarize the available data on COVID-19 vaccine acceptance rates and factors associated with acceptance in LMICs. A comprehensive search was performed in PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science from inception through August 2021. Quality assessments of the included studies were carried out using the eight-item Joanna Briggs Institute Critical Appraisal tool for cross-sectional studies. We performed a meta-analysis to estimate pooled acceptance rates with 95% confidence intervals (CI). A total of 36 studies met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review. A total of 83,867 respondents from 33 countries were studied. Most of the studies were conducted in India (n = 9), Egypt (n = 6), Bangladesh (n = 4), or Nigeria (n = 4). The pooled-effect size of the COVID-19 vaccine acceptance rate was 58.5% (95% CI: 46.9, 69.7, I2 = 100%, 33 studies) and the pooled vaccine hesitancy rate was 38.2% (95% CI: 27.2–49.7, I2 = 100%, 32 studies). In country-specific sub-group analyses, India showed the highest rates of vaccine acceptancy (76.7%, 95% CI: 65.8–84.9%, I2 = 98%), while Egypt showed the lowest rates of vaccine acceptancy (42.6%, 95% CI: 16.6–73.5%, I2 = 98%). Being male and perceiving risk of COVID-19 infection were predictors for willingness to accept the vaccine. Increasing vaccine acceptance rates in the global south should be prioritized to advance global vaccination coverage.

  • All age groups
  • Healthcare workers
  • Parents/caregivers
  • Pregnant women
  • Vaccine/vaccination
  • Acceptance
  • Coverage
  • Low and Middle Income Countries
  • COVID-19