A new study outlines the barriers and facilitators that motivate individuals to get the flu vaccine, such as personal experiences.

Convincing someone to receive the annual flu vaccine goes beyond clever messaging and well-written public service announcements, new University of Georgia research finds. The study, led by UGA’s Glen Nowak, outlines both the barriers and facilitators that motivate people in their flu vaccine decisions.

“One of the most important findings was that personal experiences mattered a lot, both for people who got an annual flu shot on a regular basis and for those who didn’t,” said Nowak, the director of the Center for Health and Risk Communication at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

“I think that is an important reminder that it is really hard to overcome personal experience with persuasive communications. A lot of time communicators think they can just educate someone or just persuade them to take action, but that isn’t always the case. It may take a better product or a new and different personal experience.”

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