The upcoming cold and flu season promises to be a trying one. In addition to dealing with the usual aches, pains, and discomfort associated with illness this time of year many are becoming anxious over the resurgence of the swine flu. Symptoms that normally would not cause fear or panic are likely to be over scrutinized sending an abundance of patients to hospitals, clinics, and doctor’s offices over the next few months. While vaccines will be available in mid-October, psychologists have an interesting take on who is most likely to take advantage of them. Research has shown that while most people were biased in thinking that their health was superior to others, those who expressed the intention to get inoculated among other things expressed lower levels of health bias (Larwood, 2006). Self-serving biases are associated with a variety of positive and negative outcomes for the self, but in this case overconfidence could be deadly.
Swine Flu: A Field Study of Self-Serving Biases
Preparing for a Stressful Flu Season