Exploring Misconceptions Surrounding Vaccinations: A Health Advocacy Project


  • Freeman Paczkowski McMaster


Despite a consistent effort by the scientific community to inform individuals about the efficacy and safety of vaccinations, harmful misconceptions still persist which have prevented their widespread acceptance within the general public. According to the most recent survey from the Public Health Agency of Canada (2017), childhood vaccination rates (children aged two years or less) were approximately 70-90% depending on the type of vaccine, and in each province, were below the national goal1. Additionally, the Canadian childhood vaccination rates reported for the common vaccines diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, and measles were reported to be some of the lowest in the developed world2. T o better understand these disparities, this video explores common misconceptions individuals may have toward vaccines. Specifically, this project takes the form of a skit which explores the perspectives of a female high school student, a mother of young children, and a male university student to understand their skepticism towards the HPV, MMR, and flu vaccines respectively. Overall, the aim of this project is to better inform the public about the benefits of vaccines in order to increase vaccination rates in Canada and improve health care outcomes for infectious diseases that are preventable by vaccines.