Study: Anti-Vaxxers Most Likely To Change Minds Because Of Fear

| by Michael Allen

A new study claims that many adults who oppose vaccinations for children will change their minds if they are confronted with the fearful consequences of not being vaccinated.

Researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and UCLA in Los Angeles asked 315 adults, parents and those without children, about their vaccination beliefs.

The adults were then split up into three groups: One group was given information to read about how autism and vaccinations are not linked; a second group was given content written by a mother whose child got measles, pictures of kids infected with measles, mumps and rubella, and warnings (written) about not vaccinating your children; the third group got some science material that was unrelated to vaccinations, notes TIME.

The second group changed its mind to favor vaccinations far more than the other two groups.

The study, which was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal, concluded: "This method outperformed alternative interventions aimed at undercutting vaccination myths."

Sources: TIME, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences / Image Credit: Barry Langdon-Lassagne/Wikimedia