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You can influence anti-vaxxers by introducing them to someone with a vaccine-preventable illness, according to researchers

Taylor Bennett, May 23, 2019

| ThriveWorks.com – A new study says that we can reduce vaccine hesitancy by introducing the hesitant individual to someone with a vaccine-preventable disease, and in turn combat anti-vaccine efforts.

Researchers found that approximately 70% of study participants who were introduced to someone with a vaccine-preventable disease went from anti-vaccine or hesitant to pro-vaccine.

Highlights from the study “Combatting Vaccine Hesitancy with Vaccine-Preventable Disease Familiarization: An Interview and Curriculum Intervention for College Students”

  • New research shows that we can reduce vaccine hesitancy by introducing the hesitant individual to someone with a vaccine-preventable disease.
  • Researchers sought to understand how we can change anti-vaccine attitudes due to a recent rise in vaccine-preventable diseases and vaccine hesitancy.
  • The experimented with 574 college students, 83 of which were vaccine-hesitant; half of these students interviewed an individual with a vaccine-preventable disease, while the other half interviewed an individual with an auto-immune disease.
  • Additionally, some participants learned about immune and vaccine-related diseases in class, while others did not.
  • The researchers found that nearly 70% of individuals who interviewed someone with a vaccine-preventable disease changed from vaccine-hesitant to pro-vaccine.
  • Additionally, 75% of vaccine-hesitant students had improved attitudes toward vaccines by the end of the study and 50% of them became fully pro-vaccine.

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