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Families Fighting Flu National Survey Results: Flu Vaccination Rates Lag as Myths Persist

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Posted on June 30, 2020
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Below is part 2 of this blog series featuring key insights on flu and COVID-19 from our recent national consumer survey. 

During a media interview this past weekend, Dr. Anthony Fauci stated that due to the power of the anti-vaccine movement, we have a lot of education to do when it comes to coronavirus vaccines. He said it best: “There is a general anti-science, anti-authority, anti-vaccine feeling among some people in this country—an alarmingly large percentage of people, relatively speaking.” We share this concern and explored these issues in a recent national consumer survey we conducted, in collaboration with Sanofi.

Our survey found that vaccine myths and skepticism persist, especially among younger people and those without a college degree. Certain populations are also more likely to be skeptical and more likely to not get a flu vaccine. Fifty-seven percent of Hispanics and 53% of African Americans reported they did not get a flu vaccine this past season. Thirty-five percent of adults with children in the household reported rarely or never getting a flu vaccine.

When it comes to the flu and coronavirus, people agree that both are serious but do not feel they are vulnerable to hospitalization or death from either illness. They feel slightly more susceptible to being at risk for getting coronavirus (64%) than the flu (58%). When it comes to the upcoming flu season this fall, if stay at home orders are in place, 59% are moderately to not at all likely to get a flu vaccine.

As Dr. Fauci said, “we have a lot of work to do” to educate people on the truth about vaccines. Our survey confirmed this as well:

  • A disproportionate number of individuals believe that flu vaccines cause the flu.
  • Safety and effectiveness of the flu vaccine in general is questioned by approximately 20% of survey respondents.
  • Approximately one-third of respondents, primarily those under age 40, questioned specific effectiveness statements.
  • Moms are evenly split, but 10-15% are neutral (e.g. don’t know) regarding flu vaccine effectiveness.

With these statistics in mind, as well as a deep concern that we are entering flu season in the middle of a pandemic, we are determined to continue to raise awareness and educate people about the importance of getting a flu vaccination by launching a new initiative…

Take Action Today: Make the Families Fighting Flu Vaccination Promise

Families Fighting Flu is launching the Families Fighting Flu Vaccination Promise to encourage people to get a flu vaccination and help curb simultaneous flu and COVID-19 activity during the upcoming season. Sign up to make the Promise — commit to getting your annual flu vaccination by a selected date —and Families Fighting Flu will email a reminder to you of your Families Fighting Flu Vaccination Promise. Together, we can make a difference.

Families Fighting Flu National Survey Results: Highlights

Who gets the flu vaccine?

  • 43% of all survey respondents received a flu vaccine this past season
  • 57% of Hispanics and 53% of African Americans did not get a flu vaccine this past season
  • 56% of those who did not receive a flu vaccine did not have a college degree
  • 27% of respondents say they never get a flu vaccine
  • 35% of adults with children in the household report rarely or never getting a flu vaccine
  • The most popular months to get vaccinated against flu are October (40%), September (19%), and November (14%)
  • After taking the survey, 53% indicated they would get a flu vaccine in the future, a 10-point increase which indicates they are open to learning and changing behavior

Learn more about Families Fighting Flu survey results by reading the first and (upcoming) third blog posts of this series.

Survey Methodology
• Survey conducted by Remington Research Group May 26 – 28, 2020 via live calls to landlines and cell phones as well as digital panels pushed via SMS to 1,446 adults
• Weighted survey to match U.S. Census demographics
• Margin of error: +/-2.5% with a 95% level of confidence
• Conducted in collaboration with Sanofi

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