05.01.2021 | Tracker

Pfizer vaccine candidate remains most discussed, as news of first approvals drives discussion

By Aaron Pitkin

Each month, CREATION.co’s COVID-19 vaccine tracker brings you the latest insights into the online healthcare professionals (HCPs) responding to the latest news and trial results for COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

Discover what healthcare professionals (HCPs) think about pharmaceutical products and their manufacturers, as it happens, through CREATION.co’s tracking updates. Each week CREATION.co’s tracking updates bring you the latest insights from the conversation of HCPs across the globe discussing Top 50 pharma, respiratory disease and more.

The Top 10 covid-19 vaccine candidates mentioned by HCPs on Twitter in December

December’s insights from HCPs mentioning covid-19 vaccine candidates on Twitter

December has seen a substantial increase in total HCP conversation around COVID-19 vaccine candidates as HCPs share news of the first approvals and discuss the newest data releases. Many HCPs have taken the opportunity to share educational information about the vaccine, such as this post about the research history of the mRNA technique. Another important theme within the conversation moved away from the medical, as multiple HCPs have reported on developments that aid or obstacle successful administration of a COVID-19 vaccine to the wider public.


HCPs by and large are incredibly enthusiastic about administration of a successful COVID-19 vaccine to the wider public. Some have made explicit attempts to combat misinformation from anti-vaccination groups, whilst others have opted for sharing educational resources and conducting FAQs on platforms like Twitter. HCPs also addressed their peers, suggesting ways for them to communicate complicated information to their patients. Some thought the best way to do this was to share and explain trial data to the public, whereas others disagreed,  believing the best moment to reassure the public was closer to the actual rollout of the vaccine.



It can be seen quite clearly that Pfizer’s vaccine candidate was the most discussed by HCPs in December 2020, particularly during the first half of the month. However, when looking more closely at what appears to be driving these conversation spikes, it is news of approvals that generate the most discussion from HCPs. This can be seen towards the end of the month, as the volume of conversation associated with each vaccine candidate levels, Pfizer and Moderna are both mentioned frequently but often in the context of Astrazeneca’s impending approval in the UK.

Considering how many posts from Pfizer’s conversation spike earlier in the month are associated with news of its approval, the overwhelming volume of mentions associated with Pfizer’s vaccine candidate may have a lot to do with their candidate being the first approved, as opposed to being the vaccine candidate HCPs are most excited for. Whilst it may seem that Pfizer’s vaccine is the frontrunner candidate for public administration due to its prevalence in the news, there is evidence of preference among HCPs for Astrazeneca’s candidate, with many citing cheaper cost, easier storage and transportation as big advantages over other approved vaccines.

With vaccine development efforts continuing to proliferate, and distribution having only just started, there are still many potential obstacles in the way of successful vaccine administration. HCPs have played a significant role in public communication during the pandemic so far, and many have actively indicated a need for more trust and partnership between HCPs and pharma. Insofar as their online behaviours are reflections of their wants and needs, understanding HCP digital communication continues to be invaluable for pharmaceutical companies at this time.

We will be tracking the online HCP conversation to identify trends and change in views relating to COVID-19 vaccines. You can stay up to date with HCP insights by subscribing to CREATION Knowledge e-journal.


  • Data for this research was analysed using CREATION Pinpoint® from the online Twitter conversations of HCPs around the world in English language (other languages are available), between December 1st –December 31st, 2020.
  • Vaccines tracked were the 66 COVID-19 vaccine candidates in clinical evaluation before 6th January 2021 (WHO Draft landscape of COVID-19 candidate vaccines).

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Meet the Author

Aaron Pitkin

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