Dispositional pandemic worry and the health belief model: Promoting vaccination during pandemic events

Courtney L. Scherr*, Jakob D. Jensen, Katheryn Christy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Background Promoting vaccination during pandemics is paramount to public health, yet few studies examined theoretical motivations for vaccination during pandemics. Thus, the relationships between dispositional pandemic worry, constructs of the health belief model (HBM) and vaccination during the H1N1 pandemic were studied. Methods Participants (N = 1377) completed surveys assessing dispositional pandemic worry, HBM variables and H1N1 vaccination. Principle axis factor analysis and point biserial correlations were conducted. Differences in worry and vaccination were assessed via independent samples t-tests. Relationships between vaccination, demographics and worry were investigated using hierarchical linear regression. PROCESS analysis was conducted to explicate the relationship between worry and vaccination intention. Results A two-factor structure of dispositional pandemic worry—worry frequency and worry severity—was confirmed. Dispositional worry was higher among those who intended to and received H1N1 vaccine. Worry frequency and worry severity were positively related to vaccination. Threat, benefits and barriers mediated the impact of worry severity and threat and barriers mediated the impact of worry frequency on vaccination intentions. Conclusions Messages increasing dispositional worry and benefits while decreasing barriers May boost vaccination behavior during a pandemic event. Future study of relationships between dispositional worry and HBM variables is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e242-e250
JournalJournal of Public Health (United Kingdom)
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017


  • Population-based
  • Preventative services
  • Psychological determinants
  • communicable diseases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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