The results of a recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveal that text messaging is an effective way to increase vaccination adoption on a large scale.
The study was conducted by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and collaborators from other academic institutions who partnered with the Penn Medicine and Geisinger health systems. The objective of the study was to determine whether texting could increase uptake of the flu (influenza) vaccine. More than 47,000 patients were randomly assigned to one of 19 text message groups. Patients received up to two sets of texted prompts about the flu shot.
The study's findings suggest that text messages sent prior to a primary care visit can boost vaccination rates by an average of 5%. Texts with language like what is typically used provider-patient communications and that were framed as a reminder to patients who already had an upcoming appointment were demonstrated to be the most effective.
The researchers stated that this script could be used as a template for campaigns to encourage the adoption of vaccines in general, including COVID-19 vaccines.
As coverage of the research notes, "This study demonstrated that simple, low-cost, behavioral nudges sent via text to patients with appointments scheduled can significantly increase vaccination uptake compared to usual care."
If your organization is interested in using text messaging to increase vaccine uptake among your patients and/or employees, contact Dialog Health today to learn how our two-way texting platform supports campaigns that drive engagement with health and wellness initiatives, including vaccinations.