Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may have 'detrimental consequences' for children's health

Date:
February 25, 2014
Source:
University of Kent
Summary:
A belief in anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may have significant and detrimental consequences for children's health, new research has shown. In the study, 89 parents were interviewed about their views on anti-vaccine conspiracy theories and then asked them to indicate their intention to have a fictional child vaccinated. It was found that stronger belief in anti-vaccine conspiracy theories was associated with lower intention to vaccinate. In a second study, 188 participants were exposed to information concerning anti-vaccine conspiracy theories. It was found that reading this material reduced their intention to have a fictional child vaccinated, relative to participants who were given refuting information or those in a control condition.

A belief in anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may have significant and detrimental consequences for children's health, new research from the University has shown.

Related Articles


Researchers Daniel Jolley and Dr Karen Douglas, of the School of Psychology, surveyed 89 parents about their views on anti-vaccine conspiracy theories and then asked them to indicate their intention to have a fictional child vaccinated. It was found that stronger belief in anti-vaccine conspiracy theories was associated with lower intention to vaccinate.

In a second study, 188 participants were exposed to information concerning anti-vaccine conspiracy theories. It was found that reading this material reduced their intention to have a fictional child vaccinated, relative to participants who were given refuting information or those in a control condition.

Daniel Jolley said: 'This research is timely in the face of declining vaccination rates and recent outbreaks of vaccinated-against diseases in the UK, such as measles. Our studies demonstrate that anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may present a barrier to vaccine uptake, which may potentially have significant and detrimental consequences for children's health.'

Dr Douglas added: 'It is easy to treat belief in conspiracy theories lightly, but our studies show that wariness about conspiracy theories may be warranted. Ongoing investigations are needed to further identify the social consequences of conspiracism and to identify potential ways to combat the effects of an ever-increasing culture of conspiracism.'

The research, titled 'The effects of anti-vaccine conspiracy theories on vaccination intentions', was carried out by Daniel Jolley, Postgraduate Researcher, and Dr Karen Douglas, Reader in Psychology, at the University of Kent. It is published in the open-access, online journal PLOS ONE.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Kent. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Daniel Jolley, Karen M. Douglas. The Effects of Anti-Vaccine Conspiracy Theories on Vaccination Intentions. PLoS ONE, 2014; 9 (2): e89177 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0089177

Cite This Page:

University of Kent. "Anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may have 'detrimental consequences' for children's health." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 February 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140225101507.htm>.
University of Kent. (2014, February 25). Anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may have 'detrimental consequences' for children's health. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140225101507.htm
University of Kent. "Anti-vaccine conspiracy theories may have 'detrimental consequences' for children's health." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140225101507.htm (accessed April 18, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers found a spike in oxytocin occurs in both humans and dogs when they gaze into each other&apos;s eyes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers who analyzed data from over 300,000 kids and their mothers say they&apos;ve found a link between gestational diabetes and autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

AP (Apr. 17, 2015) Family members are prerecording messages as part of a unique pilot program at the Hebrew Home in New York. The videos are trying to help victims of Alzheimer&apos;s disease and other forms of dementia break through the morning fog of forgetfulness. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Boy or Girl? Intersex Awareness Is on the Rise

Boy or Girl? Intersex Awareness Is on the Rise

AP (Apr. 17, 2015) At least 1 in 5,000 U.S. babies are born each year with intersex conditions _ ambiguous genitals because of genetic glitches or hormone problems. Secrecy and surgery are common. But some doctors and activists are trying to change things. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins