De noodzaak van een verhalend weerwoord
Ter discussie
Gert Olthuis, Priscilla Hanssen en Jelle van Gurp

Vaccination refusal; the need for positive influence strategies

Although vaccinating seems self-evident, the immunization coverage in the Netherlands is decreasing. This decrease is often attributed to a lack of knowledge amongst the public. We argue, however, that it is rather a lack of trust that drives this reduction in uptake. In this article we discuss the role that trust, or rather a lack thereof, plays in vaccination refusal. We underpin our argument with a recent exploration of the way in which vaccination programmes are framed in newspaper articles and on internet forums. We show the importance of rumours and shared experiences (i.e. social influencing) in parents’ decision-making process when they consider whether or not to vaccinate their child. To conclude, we argue for the development of positive influence strategies to counteract negative influences from outside the medical profession.

Conflict of interest and financial support: none declared.