“Now I feel relief for having done something to protect my health after putting myself in danger for a long time,” Keco said. “Also, I don’t mind that it will make my life easier if I decide to take a trip abroad.”

Some former vaccine skeptics in Eastern Europe have shifted over to the other side as coronavirus infections surge, countries are making it more difficult for the unvaccinated to travel abroad and authorities battle against government distrust and vaccine disinformation.

When she rolled up her sleeve in the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo to take her first COVID-19 vaccine dose, Fata Keco was afraid of possible adverse side effects. But she said the worst she had to contend with over the next few days was “moderately discomforting pain” in her left arm around the site of the injection.

More significantly, the 52-year-old self-employed cleaning woman has joined the global community of vaccine-believers after months of “being very susceptible” to what she now describes as “the most ridiculous theories.”

She told The Associated Press that some of those that she heard were “that the coronavirus does not exist, that journalists were paid to spread panic, that planes were spraying us with viruses at night, that vaccines were being used by the powers that be to implant us with tracking microchips.”

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