Information and Vaccine Hesitancy: The Role of Broadband Internet

29 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2024

See all articles by Sofia Amaral-Garcia

Sofia Amaral-Garcia

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)

Mattia Nardotto

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES)

Carol Propper

Imperial College London Business School; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); University of Bristol - Leverhulme Centre for Market and Public Organisation (CMPO)

Tommaso Valetti

Imperial College London

Date Written: 2024

Abstract

We examine the effect of internet diffusion on the uptake of an important public health intervention: the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. We study England between 2000 and 2011 when internet diffusion spread rapidly and there was a high profile medical article (falsely) linking the MMR vaccine to autism. OLS estimates suggest internet diffusion led to an increase in vaccination rates. This result is reversed after allowing for endogeneity of internet access. The effect of internet diffusion is sizable. A one standard deviation increase in internet penetration led to around a 20% decrease in vaccination rates. Localities characterised by higher proportions of high skilled individuals and lower deprivation levels had a larger response to internet diffusion. These findings are consistent with higher skilled and less deprived parents responding faster to false information that the vaccine could lead to autism.

Note:

Funding Information: The authors declare that there is no funding related to the article to be reported.

Conflict of Interests: The authors declare that they have no competing interest to declare.

Keywords: vaccines, vaccine hesitancy, internet

JEL Classification: D800, I120, L820, L860

Suggested Citation

Amaral-Garcia, Sofia and Nardotto, Mattia and Propper, Carol and Valetti, Tommaso, Information and Vaccine Hesitancy: The Role of Broadband Internet (2024). CESifo Working Paper No. 11065, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4803852 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4803852

Sofia Amaral-Garcia (Contact Author)

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) ( email )

CP 132 Av FD Roosevelt 50
Brussels, Brussels 1050
Belgium

Mattia Nardotto

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES) ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium

Carol Propper

Imperial College London Business School ( email )

South Kensington Campus
Exhibition Road
London SW7 2AZ, SW7 2AZ
United Kingdom

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

University of Bristol - Leverhulme Centre for Market and Public Organisation (CMPO) ( email )

12 Priory Road
Bristol BS8 1TN
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.bris.ac.uk/Depts/Economics/department/profiles/propper.htm

Tommaso Valetti

Imperial College London

South Kensington Campus
Exhibition Road
London, Greater London SW7 2AZ
United Kingdom

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