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Memory for Flu Facts and Myths and Effects on Vaccine Intentions

This study has been completed.
Sponsor:
Information provided by:
University of Michigan
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
NCT00296270
First received: February 23, 2006
Last updated: NA
Last verified: February 2006
History: No changes posted

February 23, 2006
February 23, 2006
March 2005
Not Provided
Memory for truth of information in a flyer.
Same as current
No Changes Posted
Intention to get flu vaccine in upcoming season.
Same as current
Not Provided
Not Provided
 
Memory for Flu Facts and Myths and Effects on Vaccine Intentions
"Myths and Facts" About the Flu: Health Education Campaigns Can Reduce Vaccination Intentions

Objectives: To determine whether people systematically misremember the “myths” (false information) as true, and to assess effects on perceptions of risk and behavioral intentions.

Public information campaigns often warn people about false and unreliable medical claims by juxtaposing “myths” and “facts.” The effectiveness of such communications has rarely been assessed. We assessed whether people systematically misremember the “myths” (false information) as true, and to assess effects on perceptions of risk and behavioral intentions.

In an experimental study, participants read either a published CDC flyer on “Facts and Myths” about the flu vaccine, or a “Facts Only” version; a separate control group read no flyer. Participants completed the outcome measures either immediately or after 30 minutes.

Primary measures were memory for information about the flu presented in the flyer, ratings of perceived risks associated with the flu, and personal intentions to get vaccinated in the upcoming season.

After a delay of 30 minutes, participants who read the “Facts and Myths” flyer systematically misremembered myths as facts. Both versions of the flyer had the immediate effect of increasing intentions to get a flu vaccine, compared to the control group. After 30 minutes, however, participants who read the “Facts and Myths” flyer reported lower intentions to get vaccinated, compared to those who read the same flyer with no delay, and compared to all participants who read the “Facts Only” flyer.

In sum, people show a bias to think that incompletely remembered information is true, turning “myths” into “facts.” Hence public information campaigns should emphasize information that is true. Repeating false information, even as a warning, can create the unintended consequence of belief in the information.

Interventional
Not Provided
Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Factorial Assignment
Masking: Double-Blind
Primary Purpose: Educational/Counseling/Training
Influenza Vaccines
Behavioral: Memory for truth
Not Provided
Not Provided

*   Includes publications given by the data provider as well as publications identified by ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier (NCT Number) in Medline.
 
Completed
175
June 2005
Not Provided

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Must be able to read and write fluent English

Exclusion Criteria:

-

Both
18 Years to 26 Years
Yes
Contact information is only displayed when the study is recruiting subjects
United States,   Canada
 
NCT00296270
RIR13914
Not Provided
Not Provided
University of Michigan
Not Provided
Principal Investigator: Ian Skurnik, PhD Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto
University of Michigan
February 2006

ICMJE     Data element required by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors and the World Health Organization ICTRP