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J Adolesc Health. 2014 Mar;54(3):289-95. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2013.09.005. Epub 2013 Nov 17.

The role of media and the Internet on vaccine adverse event reporting: a case study of human papillomavirus vaccination.

Author information

  • 1South Carolina Cancer Prevention and Control Program, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina; Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina; Department of Communication, University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas. Electronic address: jan.eberth@gmail.com.
  • 2Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina; Department of Communication, University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas.
  • 3Department of Epidemiology and Community Health, New York Medical College, NY, New York.
  • 4Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences, University of Texas School of Public Health, Houston, Texas; Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.
  • 5Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas; Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

This study aimed to determine the temporal association of print media coverage and Internet search activity with adverse events reports associated with the human papillomavirus vaccine Gardasil (HPV4) and the meningitis vaccine Menactra (MNQ) among United States adolescents.

METHODS:

We used moderated linear regression to test the relationships between print media reports in top circulating newspapers, Internet search activity, and reports to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) for HPV4 and MNQ during the first 2.5 years after Food and Drug Administration approval.

RESULTS:

Compared with MNQ, HPV4 had more coverage in the print media and Internet search activity, which corresponded with the frequency of VAERS reports. In February 2007, we observed a spike in print media for HPV4. Although media coverage waned, Internet search activity remained stable and predicted the rise in HPV4-associated VAERS reports.

CONCLUSIONS:

We demonstrate that media coverage and Internet search activity, in particular, may promote increased adverse event reporting. Public health officials who have long recognized the importance of proactive engagement with news media must now consider strategies for meaningful participation in Internet discussions.

Copyright © 2014 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

KEYWORDS:

Internet; Mass media; Meningococcal vaccines; Newspapers; Papillomavirus vaccines; Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS)

PMID:
24257032
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3943880
Free PMC Article
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