A Shot in the Arm for Vaccination Intention : The Media and the Health Belief Model in Three Chinese Societies

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Original languageEnglish
Article number3705
Journal / PublicationInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number6
Online published20 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022



This large-sample study of three Chinese societies—Mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong—demonstrates the importance of media exposure for people’s vaccination intentions during the COVID-19 pandemic. By employing two constructs (i.e., perceived susceptibility and severity) in the health belief model (HBM), the study identifies significant indirect effects of media exposure on individuals’ vaccination intention in all three Chinese societies. That said, media trust negatively moderated the path from perceived severity to vaccination intention in Mainland China and Taiwan. In these two societies, the higher an individual’s trust in media, the less influence of perceived severity on his/her vaccination intention. It suggests that the level of trust in media is a contextual factor in explaining individuals’ decision-making on health issues. Generally, the combination of the HBM and media trust has been proven to be useful for understanding individuals’ vaccination intentions. These findings provide practical considerations for governmental agencies, public institutions, and health campaign designers to promote vaccination in the pandemic.

Research Area(s)

  • Chinese societies, Health belief model, Media exposure, Media trust, Vaccination intention

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