This season, many Americans line up at doctors’ offices and clinics to get their annual flu shot. But others stay far away from these vaccines, and other shots that they feel might do more harm than good. Parents especially worry about the safety of vaccines for their children. Do Americans still trust vaccines, or are they straying away from this medical practice?
Annual Flu Vaccine
In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 29.5% of respondents said they have gotten flu shots before and plan to get one again this year. 33.3% said they have gotten at least one flu shot in the past, but don’t plan to get one this year. And 37.3% have never received a flu shot.
Overall, 41% of respondents feel that vaccines are safe. Only 11.5% feel they are not, 32.3% said they are safe sometimes, and 15.3% were undecided. The most common concern about vaccines is that they can have adverse reactions; 60.2% of those who worry about vaccine safety said these reactions were cause for concern. 36% said they fear vaccines are not necessary, and 33.9% said they worry vaccines will weaken their natural immune system. Another 37.7% said they do not know enough about vaccines to really judge whether they are safe or not.
Children at Risk
43% of respondents said they have children. Of those parents, 26.2% said they definitely worry about the safety of vaccines for their kids, 29.1% do not worry about vaccines, and 44.8% said they worry but feel the benefits outweigh the risks.
Vaccines like the flu shot have greatly decreased certain diseases in this country. Will Americans continue to use this type of medicine to fight sickness before it happens, or will more and more families begin having safety concerns?
Photo Credit: Flu vaccinations make their way to U.S. Army in Europe from Flickr