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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3CX3Q

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Information Vulnerability in Seniors and its Influence on H1N1 Influenza Vaccine Uptake Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
Seniors
Elderly
Mass media
Information vulnerability
Risk assessment
Health information seeking behaviour
H1N1 influenza
Fear
Affect
Vaccine uptake
Digital divide
Computer and Internet literacy
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Lechelt, Leah A.
Supervisor and department
Jardine, Cindy (Centre for Health Promotion Studies)
Examining committee member and department
Nykiforuk, Candace (Centre for Health Promotion Studies)
Driedger, S. Michelle (Community Health Sciences)
Bubela, Tania (Public Health Sciences)
Department
Centre for Health Promotion Studies
Specialization
Health Promotion
Date accepted
2013-03-19T09:15:37Z
Graduation date
2013-06
Degree
Master of Science
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
Communicating risk information to promote adoption of protective behaviours was challenging during the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic. Focus group research in Alberta, Canada involving 65 seniors aged 65 and older suggests this population had difficulty comprehending risk information due to inconsistent and sensationalized coverage in traditional media (television, newspapers) and low self-efficacy with online sources. I propose a new phenomenon, information vulnerability, as a consequence of seniors’ poor adaptation to this changing media environment. This vulnerability reduced seniors’ capacity to use analytic (scientific) information to assess H1N1 risk and led to preferential weighting of certain types or sources of positively affective (emotional) information, particularly personal experience, physicians and family members. These findings suggest that in the absence of clear, consistent risk information, prior attitudes and habituation related to seasonal influenza were determinants of H1N1 vaccine acceptance among seniors, whereas fear-based media messaging had little impact on vaccination decisions.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3CX3Q
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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