Princeton researchers have discovered a ‘unique’ technique to boost immunizations while hiding the risks.
Last spring, thousands of eager volunteers lined up to be vaccinated against coronavirus, but by summer, uptake had slowed considerably.
Despite major outreach attempts by public health officials, lawmakers, and celebrities, vaccination rates appear to have plateaued over much of the United States.
Princeton University researchers claim to have devised a better technique to induce immunization and masking in a new paper published Tuesday in the journal Basic and Applied Social Psychology.
A more tailored approach was found to be successful in motivating people to sign up and attend immunization appointments in tests. Researchers were also successful in promoting social separation and the wearing of masks.
Previous studies have attempted to make sense of people’s negative reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine, but the new study chose to exclude those who are opposed to immunization entirely.
In a press release, Princeton psychology professor Joel Cooper remarked, “We think we’re onto something unique that hasn’t been tested yet in the COVID-19 scenario.” “I kept thinking, there’s a set of folks who will never hear public service announcements because they already agree.”
Rather of going after diehard vaccine doubters, Princeton researchers attempted to persuade holdouts who claim to be in favor of vaccines and masking.
“They may not be excited, but they agree that vaccines are beneficial and that people should have them,” Cooper said. “However, it is them who make excuses. ‘Oh, it’s too complicated,’ says the narrator. ‘I couldn’t do that right now.’ Those are the folks who will not be reached by the other ways currently in use, but who will be reached by our method.”
The study focused on persons whose activities contradict their professed values.
“A recent survey found that between 80 and 90 percent of adults think that wearing a mask is an efficient strategy to prevent the spread of COVID-19, yet only 50 percent of respondents stated they wore a mask ‘always’ or even ‘mostly’ while in close contact with other people,” Cooper added.
“Getting individuals to conduct in accordance with the CDC guidelines, rather than merely believing that these are the correct things to do,” Cooper said, is crucial.
Princeton researchers used a technique known as “cognitive dissonance,” which asks a person to hold two opposing viewpoints simultaneously in order to motivate those who don’t always practice what they preach. Article Summary from Nokia News