Public health measures during an anticipated influenza pandemic: factors influencing willingness to comply

Melanie Taylor, Beverley Raphael, Margo Barr, Kingsley Agho, Garry Stevens, Louisa Jorm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This research assessed factors associated with willingness to comply with vaccination, isolation, and face mask wearing during an anticipated influenza pandemic. Data were collected from 2081 adults (16+) using a module of questions incorporated into the NSW Health Adult Population Health Survey. High levels of willingness to comply were reported with 73% either very or extremely willing to receive vaccination, 67% willing to isolate themselves, 58% willing to wear a face mask, and 48% willing to comply with all three behaviors. Further analysis indicated concern for self and family and higher levels of education were associated with high levels of willingness to comply. Younger people (16–24) were the least willing to comply; especially with wearing a face mask. Those with children reported higher levels of willingness to receive vaccination, and respondents who speak a language other than English at home were less willing to isolate themselves or comply with all behaviors. These findings provide a baseline measure of anticipated public compliance with key public health behaviors in the event of an influenza pandemic in the Australian population, and help to identify groups that may be more resistant to individual measures and may require additional attention in terms of risk communication strategies or health education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-20
Number of pages12
JournalRisk Management and Healthcare Policy
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • risk perception
  • pandemic influenza
  • compliance
  • health behaviors


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