HealthDay News — Many US adults are misinformed about the influenza virus and the importance of flu vaccination, according to the results of a survey released by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).
Wakefield Research conducted the online Flu Survey (between Nov. 27 and Dec. 9, 2019) on behalf of the AAFP. The analysis included a nationally representative sample of 1,000 US adults (aged 25 to 73 years) with an oversampling of Hispanic Americans, African Americans, and Asian Americans.
The survey results showed that overall, more than half (51%) of Americans have not received the flu vaccine this season and nearly a third of adults (32%) do not plan to get it. Rates are slightly worse for millennials, with 55% having not received a vaccination and 33% saying they will not get one. One-fourth of millennials say they do not have the time to get a flu shot and 22% say they have forgotten. US adults are misinformed when it comes to facts about the flu, with 82% of adults getting at least one fact wrong and 28% getting all of them wrong. Millennials were even less informed about the flu, with 86% getting at least one fact wrong and 31% getting all of them wrong. Furthermore, more than three in five millennials and 61% of African Americans say they agree with some antivaccination beliefs.
“It’s concerning to see that parents are misinformed, thinking the flu shot can give their children the flu or that they don’t need it,” Alexa Mieses, M.D., a practicing family physician in Durham, North Carolina, said in a statement. “We need to make sure they understand the seriousness of the flu so they can protect and immunize their children and themselves.”