For vaccine safety, parents trust doctor

April 2, 2011 at 12:58 AM
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ANN ARBOR, Mich., April 2 (UPI) -- Parents trust their children's doctor the most when it comes to pediatric vaccine safety followed by public health officials, U.S. researchers found.

Dr. Gary L. Freed, director of the Child Health Evaluation and Research Unit at the University of Michigan, and colleagues surveyed 1,552 parents of children ages 17 and younger on topics pertaining to vaccines. Researchers asked parents to rate degree of trust in sources of vaccine information as a lot, some or none.

The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, found 76 percent say they trust their child's doctor a lot, 26 percent say they trust other health care providers and 23 percent say government vaccine experts/officials.

Sixty-seven percent say they trust some vaccine-safety information from family and friends, and 65 percent say they trust parents who say their child was harmed by a vaccine.

Celebrities were trusted a lot for vaccine-safety information by 2 percent and trusted somewhat by 24 percent, Freed says.

The study also found mothers were more likely than fathers to report some or a lot of trust in vaccine safety information provided by parents who say their child was injured by vaccines, celebrities, television shows and magazines/news articles.

In addition, white and Hispanic parents were more likely than black parents to trust family and friends a lot or somewhat, while Hispanic parents were more likely than white or black parents to trust celebrities a lot or some for vaccine-safety information, the study says.

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