One quarter have had flu shot, one third to get it

| Filed under: National, Social Issues

One quarter have had flu shot, one third to get it

Significant minority think vaccines cause illness

TORONTO November 8th, 2015 - In a random sampling of public opinion taken by the Forum Poll™ among 1256 Canadian adults, one quarter had already received a flu shot (25%) and one third were planning to get one (33%) for a total of more than half who will be inoculated this flu season (57%). Four-in-ten will not get a vaccine (40%) and very few are unsure whether they will or not (3%). Having already been vaccinated is characteristic of the oldest (38%), prairie dwellers (42%) and among Anglophones (27%) more than Francophones (13%).

Most who will not get shot say they don’t get ill

The largest group of those who don’t plan to be vaccinated against the flu say it is because they rarely get the flu (39%), while about half this proportion say either that the vaccine is ineffective (17%) or that it causes disease (15%). Small groups are too busy (5%) or have a fear of needles (4%). As many as one fifth have some other reason (19%). Belief that vaccines cause disease is common to the oldest (24%), lower ($20K to $40K - 20%) and higher income groups ($80K to $100K - 20%), Conservatives (20%) and the least educated (21%).

 “A claimed vaccination penetration rate of more than 50% has to be quite a positive indicator, in that rarely do more than about a third of Canadian adults get inoculated against the flu. In our results, we see three quarters of seniors either inoculated or intending to be, and this matches the clinical data well. Unfortunately, it is the oldest who are also most likely to believe vaccines cause rather than prevent disease,” said Forum Research President, Dr. Lorne Bozinoff.

Lorne Bozinoff, Ph.D. is the president and founder of Forum Research. He can be reached at or at (416) 960-9603.