44% of adults received the flu vaccine last year

About 104 million adults said they received the flu vaccine in the last year – a 9% increase year-over-year, according to the 2013 MARS/OTC DTC Study. Still, less than half of all U.S. adults (44%) say they received the vaccine. Of those that did receive, the majority are over the age of 50.

We also found that overall health doesn’t seem to determine whether or not an adult gets the flu vaccine either. Those in fair/poor health are only very slightly (9%) more likely to say they received it.

Examining the H1N1 vaccine, which was the most common cause of the flu in 2009, we found that less and less adults say they’ve received the vaccine each year since 2011. For example, in 2011, 22% of adults received the vaccine. Just two years later, it’s only 5%. One interesting note: adults ages 18-34 are actually 45% more likely to say they received the H1N1 vaccine in 2013.

How do adults feel about vaccines? We found that the number of adults who trust their doctors to recommend the vaccines that are essential to their continued health has fallen just slightly from 75% in 2011 to 69% in 2013. The number of adults who say they are concerned about possible side effects related to their vaccinations dropped 22% since 2011.

Other notable attitudes include:

  • 39% of adults are willing to ask their doctors for a vaccine they have seen or heard advertised.
  • 54% of adults agree that if required vaccinations stopped, epidemics would return/become a problem.
  • 37% of adults say that over the years, vaccines have become increasingly low risk.

Using data from this study can help agencies and marketers understand ailment sufferers, treatment and how to best reach them. For more information about accessing full study results, contact us here.

Kantar Media’s MARS OTC/DTC Study helps agencies, marketers and media make better healthcare media and marketing decisions. It ties multimedia consumption to medical ailments, pharma brands, attitudes and opinions about healthcare and many other data points. A large sample of about 20,000 respondents provides stable and reliable information across categories and brands. Gain insights into category and product usage for 500+ OTC and Rx remedies, detailed information for 70 health conditions, including treatment options and much more.

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