Perceived Risk for Influenza in Veterans With Spinal Cord Injuries and Disorders

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ObjectiveGuided by the extended parallel process model (EPPM), the objective was to assess control processes dominant in influenza behavior decisions.DesignCross-sectional survey.ResultsResponse rate was 31% (n = 968). Regarding influenza risk, 59% were in danger control. Those in fear control were more likely to report influenza infection (p = .000). In the nonvaccinated, those in fear control were more likely to indicate not knowing where to get the vaccine (p = .016) and that it was unavailable (p = .027), and those in danger control believed they did not need it (p = .023). Zero critical values were more likely to indicate that no health provider recommended the shot (p = .002).ConclusionsMost perceived efficacy to be stronger than threat related to influenza; according to the EPPM, they are aware of their risk but recognize their ability to avert it. For those in danger control, messages should focus on increasing perceptions of severity and susceptibility to positively affect behavior change. For those in fear control, messages should focus on efficacy only. With a critical value of zero, no threat is induced, and a high-threat/high-efficacy approach should be taken.

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