Discussing vaccine and autism in a mainstream newspaper in Italy: A thematic analysis

Author/s Monica Pivetti, Silvia Potì, Silvia Di Battista
Publishing Year 2022 Issue 2022/3 Language English
Pages 22 P. 53-74 File size 379 KB
DOI 10.3280/PDS2022-003007
DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation click here

Below, you can see the article first page

If you want to buy this article in PDF format, you can do it, following the instructions to buy download credits

Article preview

FrancoAngeli is member of Publishers International Linking Association, Inc (PILA), a not-for-profit association which run the CrossRef service enabling links to and from online scholarly content.

Over the past few years, there has been a great deal of concern regarding the potential links between childhood vaccinations and the development of ASD, possibly leading to vaccine hesitancy. This study aims to explore the representational field related to the vaccine-autism link in a mainstream Italian newspaper. We analyzed newspaper articles published on La Repubblica, from January 2009 untill January 2017 (N = 168 newspaper articles), via T-Lab software. The analysis produced four clusters: a) Trust and sense of belonging; b) Judgment dimension; c) Catastrophic narratives; d) Organization of the public healthcare system. The need to monitor media coverage on key healthcare topics was considered of paramount importance.

Keywords: vaccine hesitancy, vaccine-autism link, media analysis, T-Lab, trust

  1. Benvenuto A., Moavero R., Alessandrelli R., Manzi B. & Curatolo P. (2009). Syndromic autism: Causes and pathogenetic pathways. World Journal of Pediatrics, 5, 169-176 (2009).
  2. Berezin M. & Ead A. (2016). Risk is for the rich? Childhood vaccination resistance and a Culture of Health. Social Science & Medicine, 165, 233-245.
  3. Berti C. & Di Battista S. (2011). Framing Student Engagement through Percep-tion of Justice: The Role of Trust in Authorities in Educational Contexts. In Newley R.J. (Ed.), Classrooms: Management Effectiveness and Challenges (pp. 59-75). New York: Nova Science Publishers.
  4. Bonanni P. (2018). Enlarged free childhood vaccination offer in Italy proposed to curb the rise in the growing anti-vaccine message. Expert Review of Vaccines, 17(2), 103-105. DOI: 10.1080/14760584.2018.1419069
  5. Brown K., Kroll J., Hudson M., Ramsay M., Green J., Vincent C., Fraser G. & Sevdalis N. (2010). Omission bias and vaccine rejection by parents of healthy children: Implications for the influenza A/H1N1 vaccination programme. Vaccine, 28(25), 4181-4185.
  6. Burioni R. (2016). Il vaccino non è un’opinione. Milano: Mondadori.
  7. Camus A. (1947/2017). La peste (trans. Yasmina Mélaouah) Milano: Bompiani (Original work published 1947).
  8. Caputo A. (2013). La rappresentazione narrativa della malattia rara: uno studio qualitativo sulle esperienze dei pazienti. Psychofenia: Ricerca ed Analisi Psicologica, (28), 73-98.
  9. Casciotti D.M., Smith K.C., Andon L., Vernick J., Tsui A. & Klassen A.C. (2014). Print news coverage of school-based human papillomavirus vaccine mandates. The Journal of School Health, 84(2).
  10. Casiday R., Cresswell T., Wilson D. & Panter-Brick C. (2006). A survey of UK parental attitudes to the MMR vaccine and trust in medical authority. Vaccine, 24, 177-184.
  11. Catalan-Matamoros D. & Peñafiel-Saiz C. (2019). How is communication of vaccines in traditional media: A systematic review. Perspectives in Public Health, 139(1), 34-43. DOI: 10.1177/175791391878014
  12. Catalan-Matamoros D. & Peñafiel-Saiz C. (2020). Exploring the relationship between newspaper coverage of vaccines and childhood vaccination rates in Spain. Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics, 1-7.
  13. Christidou V., Dimopoulos K. & Koulaidis V. (2004). Constructing social representations of science and technology: the role of metaphors in the press and the popular scientific magazines. Public understanding of Science, 13(4), 347-362.
  14. Clarke, C. (2008). A question of balance: The autism-vaccine controversy in the British and American elite press. Science Communication, 30(1), 77-107. DOI: 10.1177/107554700832026
  15. Cohen A.D. & Shoenfeld Y. (1996). Vaccine-induced autoimmunity. Journal of Autoimmunity, 9(6), 699-703.
  16. Cortini M. & Tria S. (2014). Triangulating qualitative and quantitative approaches for the analysis of textual materials: An introduction to T-lab. Social Science Computer Review, 32(4), 561-568. DOI: 10.1177/089443931351010
  17. Datamedia.hub (2019). http://www.datamediahub.it/2019/04/01/quanto-copie-hanno-venduto-il-corriere-della-sera-e-repubblica-2008-2018/#axzz6a5Ke0SE7
  18. Dixon G.N. & Clarke C.E. (2013). The effect of falsely balanced reporting of the autism–vaccine controversy on vaccine safety perceptions and behavioral intentions. Health Education Research, 28(2), 352-359.
  19. Di Stefano A. (2011). Un paese (dis)unito. Le celebrazioni dell’unificazione nella rappresentazione giornalistica: il caso de La Stampa. Comunicazionepuntodoc, 4, 281-294
  20. Dubé E., Vivion M. & MacDonald N. (2015). Vaccine hesitancy, vaccine refusal and the anti-vaccine movement: Influence, impact and implications. Expert Review of Vaccines, 14(1), 99-117. DOI: 10.1586/14760584.2015.96421
  21. Enkel S.L., Attwell K., Snelling T.L. & Christian H.E. (2018). ‘Hesitant compliers’: Qualitative analysis of concerned fully-vaccinating parents. Vaccine, 36(44), 6459-6463.
  22. European Medicine Agency (2010). Hexavac. -- https://www.ema.europa.eu/en/medicines/ human/EPAR/hexavac
  23. Ferro A., Odone A., Siddu A., Colucci M., Anello P., Longone M., Castiglia E., Bonanni P. & Signorelli C. (2015). Monitoring the web to support vaccine coverage: Results of two years of the portal VaccinarSì. Epidemiologia e Prevenzione, 39(4Suppl 1), 88-93. -- http://www.epiprev.it/materiali/2015/EP2015_I4S1_088.pdf
  24. Freed G.L., Clark S.J., Butchart A.T., Singer D.C. & Davis M.M. (2011). Sources and perceived credibility of vaccine-safety information for parents. Pediatrics, 127(1), 107-12.
  25. Garfin D.R., Silver R.C. & Holman E.A. (2020). The novel coronavirus (COVID-2019) outbreak: Amplifcation of public health consequences by media exposure. Health Psychology, 39(5), 355-357.
  26. Gius E., Zamperini A. & Collini M. (1998). Il ruolo dei media nella rappresentazione sociale della procreazione assistita. Studi di Sociologia, 305-324.
  27. Greco F. & Polli A. (2019). Vaccines in Italy: the emotional text mining of social media. Rivista Italiana di Economia Demografia e Statistica, 73(1), 89-98. -- https://ideas.repec.org/a/ite/iteeco/190106.html
  28. Guay M., Gosselin V., Petit G., Baron G. & Gagneur A. (2019). Determinants of vaccine hesitancy in Quebec: A large population-based survey. Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics, 15(11), 2527-2533. DOI: 10.1080/21645515.2019.1603563
  29. Hilton S., Hunt H., Langan M., Bedford H. & Petticrew M. (2010). Newsprint media representations of the introduction of the HPV vaccination programme for cervical cancer prevention in the UK (2005-2008). Social Science & Medicine, 71(6), 942-950.
  30. Hoffman B.L., Felter E.M., Chu K-H., Shensa A., Hermann C., Wolynn T., Williams D. & Primack B.A. (2019). It’s not all about autism: The emerging landscape of anti-vaccination sentiment on Facebook. Vaccine, 37(16), 2216-2223.
  31. Holton A., Weberling B., Clarke C.E. & Smith M.J. (2012). The Blame Frame: Media Attribution of Culpability About the MMR–Autism Vaccination Scare. Health Communication, 27(7), 690-701. DOI: 10.1080/10410236.2011.63315
  32. Hussain A., Ali S., Ahmed M. & Hussain S. (2018). The anti-vaccination movement: A regression in modern medicine. Cureus, 10(7), e2919 10.7759/cureus.2919
  33. Innocenzi G. (2017). Vacci-nazioni. Oltre ignoranza e pregiudizi, tutto quello che davvero non sappiamo sui vaccini in Italia. Milano: Baldini-Castoldi.
  34. Jain A., Marshall J., Buikema A., Bancroft T., Kelly J. & Newschaffer C. (2015). Autism occurrence by MMR vaccine status among US children with older siblings with and without autism. JAMA, 313(15), 1534.
  35. Jodelet D. (1991). Madness and Social Representations. London: Harvester Wheat Sheaf.
  36. Kang G., Ewing-Nelson S., Mackey L., Schlitt J., Marathe A., Abbas K. & Swarup S. (2017). Semantic network analysis of vaccine sentiment in online social media. Vaccine, 35(29), 3621-3638.
  37. Keelan J. & Wilson K. (2011). Balancing vaccine science and national policy objectives: lessons from the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program Omnibus Autism Proceedings. American journal of public health, 101(11), 2016-2021.
  38. Lancia F. (2017). User’s manual: Tools for text analysis. T-Lab version Plus 2017.
  39. Larson H.J., Clarke R.M., Jarrett C., Eckersberger E., Levine Z., Schulz W.S. & Paterson P. (2018). Measuring trust in vaccination: A systematic review. Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics, 14(7), 1599-1609. DOI: 10.1080/21645515.2018.145925
  40. Larson H.J., De Figueiredo A., Xiahong Z., Schulz W.S., Verger P., Johnston I.G. ... & Jones N.S. (2016). The state of vaccine confidence 2016: global insights through a 67-country survey. EBioMedicine, 12, 295-301.
  41. Lincoln Y.S. & Denzin N.K. (Eds.). (1994). Handbook of qualitative research. Sage.
  42. Luhmann N. (1979). Trust and Power. Chichester: John Wiley.
  43. MacDonald N.E. (2015). Vaccine hesitancy: Definition, scope and determinants. Vaccine, 33(34), 4161-4164.
  44. Maeseele P. & Schuurman D. (2008). Biotechnology and the Popular Press in Northern Belgium. Science Communication, 29(4), 435-471. DOI: 10.1177/107554700831622
  45. Mann B.W. (2019). Autism narratives in media coverage of the MMR Vaccine-Autism controversy under a Crip Futurism Framework. Health Communication, 34(9), 984-990. DOI: 10.1080/10410236.2018.1449071
  46. Markova I. (2009). Dialogicità e conoscenza [Dialogicity and knowledge]. In Palmonari A. & Emiliani F. (Eds.), I paradigmi delle rappresentazioni sociali [Paradigms of Social Representations] (pp. 211-252). Bologna: il Mulino.
  47. Mazzoni D., Marchetti L., Albanesi C. & Cicognani E. (2018). The use of T-LAB in health psychology. A literature review. Psicologia della Salute, 2, 91-114. DOI: 10.3280/PDS2018-00200
  48. Mendel-Van Alstyne J., Nowak G. & Aikin A. (2018). What is ‘confidence’ and what could affect it?: A qualitative study of mothers who are hesitant about vaccines. Vaccine, 36(44), 6464-6472.
  49. Ministry of Health (2019). -- http://www.salute.gov.it/imgs/C_17_tavole_20_allegati_iitem Allegati_0_fileAllegati_itemFile_7_file.pdf
  50. Montali L., Colombo M., Riva P. & Cipriani R. (2011). Conflicting representations of pain: a qualitative analysis of health care professionals’ discourse. Pain Medicine, 12(11), 1585-1593.
  51. Moscovici S. (1984). The phenomenon of social representations. In Farr R.M. & Moscovici S. (Eds.). Social representations (pp. 3-69). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  52. Moscovici S. (2008). Psychoanalysis: Its image and its public. Cambridge: Polity Press.
  53. National Institute of Mental Health (2019). What is autism spectrum disorder? -- http://www. nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/autism-spectrumdisorders-asd/index.shtml
  54. Odone A., Tramutola V., Morgado M. & Signorelli C. (2018). Immunization and media coverage in Italy: An eleven-year analysis (2007-17). Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics, 14(10), 2533-2536. DOI: 10.1080/21645515.2018.148615
  55. Offit P. & Coffin S. (2003). Communicating science to the public: MMR vaccine and autism. Vaccine, 22(1), 1-6.
  56. Ortiz R.R., Smith A. & Coyne-Beasley T. (2019). A systematic literature review to examine the potential for social media to impact HPV vaccine uptake and awareness, knowledge, and attitudes about HPV and HPV vaccination. Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics, 15(7-8), 1465-1475. DOI: 10.1080/21645515.2019.158154
  57. Ozawa S. & Stack M.L. (2013). Public trust and vaccine acceptance-international perspectives. Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics, 9(8), 1774-1778.
  58. Ozawa S., Paina L. & Qiu M. (2016). Exploring pathways for building trust in vaccination and strengthening health system resilience. BMC Health Services Research, 16(7), 131-141.
  59. Peters M.A. (2020). The Plague: Human resilience and the collective response to catastrophe. Educational Philosophy and Theory. DOI: 10.1080/00131857.2020.174592
  60. Pivetti M., Melotti G. & Mancini C. (2020). Vaccines and autism: A preliminary qualitative study on the beliefs of concerned mothers in Italy. International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being, 15(1), 1754086. DOI: 10.1080/17482631.2020.175408
  61. Potì S., Emiliani F. & Palareti L. (2018). Subjective experience of illness among adolescents and young adults with diabetes: a qualitative research study. Journal of Patient Experience, 5(2), 140-146.
  62. Ricciardi W., Boccia S. & Siliquini R. (2018). Moving towards compulsory vaccination: The Italian experience. European Journal of Public Health, 28(1), 2-3.
  63. Rosenberg R.E., Law J.K., Anderson C., Samango-Sprouse C. & Law P.A. (2013). Survey of vaccine beliefs and practices among families affected by autism spectrum disorders. Clinical Pediatrics, 52(9), 871-874. DOI: 10.1177/000992281243843
  64. Shrum L.J. (2009). Media consumption and perceptions of social reality: Effects and underlying processes. In Media effects (pp. 66-89). London: Routledge.
  65. Singh V.K., Warren R.P., Odell J.D., Warren W.L. & Cole P.H.Y.L.L.I.S. (1993). Antibodies to myelin basic protein in children with autistic behavior. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 7(1), 97-103.
  66. Smith P.J., Humiston S.G., Marcuse E.K., Zhao Z., Dorell C.G., Howes C. & Hibbs B. (2011). Parental delay or refusal of vaccine doses, childhood vaccination coverage at 24 months of age, and the Health Belief Model. Public Health Reports, 126(2_suppl). DOI: 10.1177/00333549111260S21
  67. Tafuri S.S., Martinelli D.D., Caputi G.G., Arbore A.A., Germinario C.G. & Prato R.P. (2009). Italian healthcare workers’ views on mandatory vaccination. BMC Health Services Research, 9(100). DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-9-10
  68. Taylor L., Swerdfeger A. & Eslick G. (2014). Vaccines are not associated with autism: An evidence-based meta-analysis of case-control and cohort studies. Vaccine, 32(29), 3623-3629.
  69. Tran B.X., Boggiano V.L., Nguyen L.H., Latkin C.A., Nguyen H., Tran T.T., Le H.T., Vu T., Ho C.S. & Ho R.C. (2018). Media representation of vaccine side effects and its impact on utilization of vaccination services in Vietnam. Patient Preference and Adherence, 12, 1717-1728. DOI: 10.2147/PPA.S17136
  70. Uno Y., Uchiyama T., Kurosawa M., Aleksic B. & Ozaki N. (2015). Early exposure to the combined measles–mumps–rubella vaccine and thimerosal-containing vaccines and risk of autism spectrum disorder. Vaccine, 33(21), 2511-2516.
  71. Van Dijk T.A. (2009). News, discourse, and ideology. The handbook of journalism studies, 191-204.
  72. Vasterman P., Yzermans C.J. & Dirkzwager A.J.E. (2005). The role of the media and media hypes in the aftermath of disasters. Epidemiologic Reviews, 27, 107-114.
  73. Wagner W., Kronberger N. & Seifert F. (2002). Collective symbolic coping with new technology: Knowledge, images and public discourse. British Journal of Social Psychology, 41(3), 323-343. DOI: 10.1348/01446660276034424
  74. Wang E., Baras Y. & Buttenheim A.M. (2015). «Everybody just wants to do what’s best for their child»: Understanding how pro-vaccine parents can support a culture of vaccine hesitancy. Vaccine, 33(48), 6703-6709.
  75. Yang C., Dillard J.P. & Li R. (2018). Understanding fear of Zika: Personal, interpersonal, and media influences. Risk Analysis, 38(12), 2535-2545.
  76. Yaqub O., Castle-Clarke S., Sevdalis N. & Chataway J. (2014). Attitudes to vaccination: A critical review. Social Science & Medicine, 112, 1-11.
  77. Young M.E., Norman G.R. & Humphreys K.R. (2008). Medicine in the popular press: the influence of the media on perceptions of disease. PLoS One, 3(10), e3552.
  78. Zarychta A. (2015). Community trust and household health: A spatially-based approach with evidence from rural Honduras. Social Science & Medicine, 146, 85-94.
  79. Zhai Y., Sun S., Wang F. & Ding Y. (2017). Multiplicity and uncertainty: Media coverage of autism causation. Journal of Informetrics, 11(3), 873-887.

  • Self-transcendence values, vaccine hesitancy, and COVID-19 vaccination: some results from Italy Monica Pivetti, Francesca Giorgia Paleari, Daniela Barni, Claudia Russo, Silvia Di Battista, in Social Influence 2261632/2023
    DOI: 10.1080/15534510.2023.2261632

Monica Pivetti, Silvia Potì, Silvia Di Battista, Discussing vaccine and autism in a mainstream newspaper in Italy: A thematic analysis in "PSICOLOGIA DELLA SALUTE" 3/2022, pp 53-74, DOI: 10.3280/PDS2022-003007