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That’s just what’s expected of you … so you do it’: Mothers discussions around choice and the MMR vaccination

Johnson, Sally and Capdevila, Rose (2014). That’s just what’s expected of you … so you do it’: Mothers discussions around choice and the MMR vaccination. Psychology & Health, 29(8) pp. 861–876.

DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link: https://doi.org/10.1080/08870446.2014.892940
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Abstract

One of the major shifts in the form and experience of contemporary family life has been the increasing insertion of the 'expert' voice into the relationship between parents and children. This paper focuses on an exploration of mothers' engagement with advice around the combined measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. Much of the previous literature utilises a ‘decision-making’ framework, based on ‘risk assessment’ whereby mothers’ decisions are conceptualised as rooted in complex belief systems, and supposes that that by gaining an understanding of these systems, beliefs and behaviour can be modified and uptake improved. However, less attention has been paid to the ways in which mothers negotiate such advice or the ways in which advice is mediated by positionings, practices and relationships. Analysis of data from a focus group with five mothers identified three themes: 1) Sourcing advice and information, 2) Constructing ‘Mother knows best’ and 3) Negotiating agency. Despite the trustworthiness of advice and information being questioned, an awareness of concerns about the MMR, and health professionals being constructed as remote, ultimate conformity to, and compliance with, the ‘system’ and ‘society’ were described as determining MMR ‘decisions’.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2014 Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 0887-0446
Keywords: the MMR vaccination; advice to mothers; qualitative analysis; risk; choice; agency
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Psychology and Counselling > Psychology
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Psychology and Counselling
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Item ID: 43233
Depositing User: Rose Capdevila
Date Deposited: 03 Jun 2015 15:06
Last Modified: 06 Aug 2019 08:47
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/43233
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