FOS: Let’s connect family accommodation with producers of quality Croatian products

first_imgThe Third National Forum of Family Accommodation, which will be held from 15 to 17 November in Zadar, in the Sports Hall Višnjik, will bring together about 1500 representatives of family accommodation from all over Croatia and will briefly become a meeting place for domestic tourism providers and Croatian manufacturers and suppliers. products and services for family accommodation.”This year we are different and innovative and we decided to merge the Forum with the action of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce Let’s buy Croatian – Croatian product for Croatian tourism”, Said the director of the Sector for Tourism of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce Leila Krešić-Jurić at a press conference on November 4 at the Croatian Chamber of Commerce. On that occasion, the president of the Family Tourism Association of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, Nedo Pinezić, stated: “The family tourism community brings together micro-entrepreneurs in all forms of family accommodation in tourism, in more than 80.000 households and with 300.000 people working in this activity. This represents a serious economic potential for stimulating economic growth and youth employment. “Director of the Tourism Department of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce Leila Krešić-Jurić; Source: HGK.That is why the Forum will discuss topics that need to be raised to the national level: the flexibility of the business service, the categorization and introduction of national branding, then the issue of utility fees and destination management. Family micro-entrepreneurs in tourism should also be provided with favorable financing, especially through HBOR. “We want to provide family accommodation providers with concrete and effective tools to manage this business”, Said Krešić-Jurić and announced the participation of the Minister of Tourism Gari Cappelli and the head of the European Association of Family Accommodation Carlos Villar Lassen at the Forum.”The forum will bring together producers and consumers of Croatian products, for which there is a demand for family accommodation. For example, according to the survey, among more than 700 small and micro-entrepreneurs in this branch of activity, 35% are interested in credit and insurance services, the same number for garden furniture and equipment, 32% for professional consultations, 31% for landscaping and adaptation products. , 30% for furniture, 28% for textile products, etc. We have consumers for quality Croatian products, who are ready to buy and pay for them immediately ”, said Pinezić, emphasizing the intention of the Community to become a member of the European Association of Family Accommodation, which brings together 20 million tourist beds in Europe and is very influential in the European Commission. There will also be talks about parafiscal charges for this activity, such as fees for water, forests, monument rents and especially charges for the protection of music copyrights, Pinezić added.President of the Family Tourism Association of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce Nedo Pinezić; Source: HGK.”In the first ten months of 2016, according to e-Visitor, 81.000 households in family accommodation were recorded in Croatia, with 492.000 basic beds and 120.000 beds from other types of catering facilities, out of a total of one million beds in commercial activities. In that period, there were 30 million tourist overnight stays in family accommodation and 4,7 million arrivals”, Said Iva Puđak Mihajlović from the Croatian National Tourist Board, sponsor and partner of the Forum.last_img read more

Personalized computer feedback can mitigate problem gambling behaviors

first_imgShare on Facebook Pinterest Email LinkedIn Sharecenter_img Share on Twitter More than 1.6 million college-aged adults meet the criteria for problem gambling. This can lead to difficulties at work, school or home, and with relationships, personal finances, and mental and physical health. Counseling for problem gamblers can be expensive and time consuming; a new study from the University of Missouri has found that college-aged adults who were diagnosed as problem gamblers significantly changed their behaviors after receiving personalized feedback from computers.“We don’t want to replace the one-on-one counseling work that is being done. This is another tool that could be very useful for gamblers who might not be interested in seeking personal counseling services, for counselors who are looking to supplement what they offer, or for college wellness centers who want to mitigate risky behavior before it gets worse,” said Matt Martens, professor of counseling psychology in the College of Education. “Typically, younger problem gamblers are not interested in seeking help. While their behavior might not be at a significant risk level yet, this tool would allow them to receive an assessment without talking directly to a counselor.”In the study, Martens identified 333 college-aged adults and, after determining the level of gambling for each individual, gave them one of three interventions. One group was provided with standard information about the effects of problem gambling; the second group was not provided with any information; the third group answered survey questions and was provided with individualized feedback from a computer based on their answers. Martens followed up with each group three months after the initial intervention and found that those who received the personalized feedback generated by the computer assessment tool experienced a significant decline in problem gambling behavior compared to the other two groups. Prior to the intervention, Martens asked study participants to describe their current gambling behaviors, which included how many times they gambled each week or month, how much money was wagered, how much money was lost, and what problems they experienced based on their gambling. Participants also were asked about the types of gambling games they played, including slot machines and games of skill such as golf or bowling. They also reported on how often they purchased lottery tickets, played cards for money, or wagered money on sports games.“At-risk gambling rates are particularly high in the college-age population, and these problem gamblers may not recognize that they are experiencing problems,” Martens said. “They may think that they are gambling at the same rate as their peers, when that’s really not the case. That’s where these types of programs can help because individuals receive an unbiased, personalized assessment that shows them the social norms of their gambling activity and how they compare.”Martens said this type of intervention could be used most effectively on college campuses at health centers or as a part of comprehensive wellness programs targeting students. Targeting those individuals who might be at a greater risk could help prevent them from developing behaviors that would have negative effects on the rest of their lives.Martens said that further research should be conducted to determine if this intervention is more effective with certain types of gambling behaviors, such as those individuals who only bet on games of skill compared to those who bet on games of chance.The study, “The Efficacy of a Personalized Feedback-Only Intervention for at-Risk College Gamblers,” will be published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. Funding for the study was provided by the National Center for Responsible Gaming.last_img read more

Repeating things aloud to another person boosts memory recall, study finds

first_imgThe results show a clear difference when the exercise was performed aloud in the presence of someone else, even though the participants had heard absolutely nothing. Repeating in one’s head without gesturing was the least effective way to recall information. “The simple fact of articulating without making a sound creates a sensorimotor link that increases our ability to remember, but if it is related to the functionality of speech, we remember even more,” Boucher said.Previous studies conducted at Professor Boucher’s Phonetic Sciences Laboratory have shown that when we articulate a sound, we create a sensory and motor reference in our brain, by moving our mouth and feeling our vocal chords vibrate. “The production of one or more sensory aspects allows for more efficient recall of the verbal element. But the added effect of talking to someone shows that in addition to the sensorimotor aspects related to verbal expression, the brain refers to the multisensory information associated with the communication episode,” Boucher explained. “The result is that the information is better retained in memory.”Evoking one’s memory of sensory episodes is in part the phenomenon to which French writer Marcel Proust alluded when he referred to “the madeleines of his childhood.” The texture and flavour of these little cakes rekindled in him an emotional connection that reminded him of his mother. But what do we keep in memory? How does episodic and multisensory memory work? These questions are at the heart of Professor Boucher’s work. Challenging the formal approaches in linguistics, particularly the analysis of spoken language through writing, he has endeavoured for several years to build bridges between his discipline and neuroscience.Lafleur, a former student who is now a doctoral student in neuropsychology, and Boucher conducted another experiment. “This time, we used sequences of syllables that do not form lexemes in French, i.e., non-words,” said the professor. As the researchers expected, their data showed no difference between the various experimental conditions. Subjects did not recall the sequences of “non-words” any better – whether they produced them aloud, silently, or when speaking to someone.According to the professor, the fact that the information cannot be grafted to verbal elements in memory and involving a sensory reference explains the absence of effects between the conditions of production. “The results of our research confirm the importance of motor sensory experiences in memory retention and help to better define sensory episodes associated with verbal expression,” Boucher concluded. Email Share Repeating aloud boosts verbal memory, especially when you do it while addressing another person, says Professor Victor Boucher of the University of Montreal’s Department of Linguistics and Translation. His findings are the result of a study that will be published in the next edition of Consciousness and Cognition.“We knew that repeating aloud was good for memory, but this is the first study to show that if it is done in a context of communication, the effect is greater in terms of information recall,” Boucher explained.To demonstrate this, Boucher and Alexis Lafleur asked 44 French-speaking university students to read a series of lexemes on a screen. A lexeme is a word such as it is found in a dictionary. During the task, the participants wore headphones that emitted “white noise” to mask their own voices and eliminate auditory feedback. The subjects were submitted to four experimental conditions: repeating in their head, repeating silently while moving their lips, repeating aloud while looking at the screen, and finally, repeating aloud while addressing someone. After a distraction task, they were asked to identify the lexemes they recalled having said from a list that included lexemes not used in the test. Share on Facebookcenter_img Share on Twitter Pinterest LinkedInlast_img read more

Study shows angry men gain influence and angry women lose influence

first_imgThe research bolsters the idea that a woman making an impassioned argument could actually convince others of that argument – if she were a man. But it goes a step further and shows that angry women actually lose influence.The research has implications beyond the deliberation room, according to ASU psychologist Jessica Salerno, co-author of the study, “One angry woman: Anger expression increases influence for men, but decreases influence for women during group deliberation.” It was published in the journal Law and Human Behavior. Liana Peter-Hagene of the University of Illinois-Chicago is the other co-author.“Our study suggests that women might not have the same opportunity for influence when they express anger,” Salerno said. “We found that when men expressed their opinion with anger, participants rated them as more credible, which made them less confident in their own opinion. But when women expressed identical arguments and anger, they were perceived as more emotional, which made participants more confident in their own opinion.”“This effect can’t be explained by women communicating anger less effectively or looking different when they express anger because we took all of that out of the equation,” Salerno explained. “The effect was due to participants thinking that anger came from a man versus a woman.”The study featured 210 jury eligible undergraduates who participated in a computer simulation in which they believed they were deliberating with five other participants. Each participant viewed a 17-minute presentation that was based on evidence from a real case in which a man was tried for murdering his wife. Participants read summaries of the opening and closing statements and eyewitness testimonies. They also viewed photographs of the crime scene and the alleged murder weapon.To begin deliberation participants had a preliminary vote of guilty or not guilty. Each then exchanged a series of messages, purportedly with peers who also all had to agree as a group on whether or not to convict.These exchanges were scripted in advance and in a very specific way – four of the fictional jurors agreed with the participant’s verdict and one disagreed. The lone hold out had a user name that was clearly male or female and the other names were gender neutral.All participants read essentially the same arguments, but for some the points were made with anger, others were made in the spirit of fear and the rest were conveyed in an emotionally neutral tone. During the course of discussion, participants periodically answered questions about the extent to which they felt confident in their initial verdict. Afterwards they voted once more (only seven percent changed their minds).“Participants confidence in their own verdict dropped significantly after male holdouts expressed anger,” the researchers stated. “Participants became significantly more confident in their original verdicts after female holdouts expressed anger, even though they were expressing the exact same opinion and emotion as the male holdouts.”The influence effect was “evident in both male and female participants,” Salerno said.“What is most disturbing about the findings is that they were produced by anger, specifically,” she added. “If you think about when we express anger, it is often when we really care about something, when we are most passionate and most convicted about a decision. Our results suggest that gender gaps in influence are most likely to materialize in these situations–when we are arguing for something we care about most.”For Salerno the study has implications for women in a variety of settings.“Our results have implications for any woman who is trying to exert influence on a decision in their workplace and everyday lives, including governing bodies, task forces and committees,” she said.“The results from this study suggest that if female political candidates express their opinion with anger, during the debates for example, it is possible that they might have less influence than if they do not express anger,” Salerno explained. “This might explain why Bernie Sanders is able to freely express his passion and conviction, while Hilary Clinton clearly regulates her emotions more carefully.” Pinterest Share on Facebook LinkedIn Share on Twittercenter_img Share Anyone who knows the history of the jury trial or has seen “12 Angry Men” is aware that U.S. juries were originally exclusively white and male. There have been many efforts toward making juries more diverse and representative of the population. Now that we have more women and racial minorities represented on juries the question becomes: Do they have the same opportunity to exert influence over jury decisions as do white men.In a word, no.A new study from Arizona State University focused on jury deliberation behaviors demonstrates a distinct gender bias when it comes to expressing anger and influencing people. The study found that men use anger to influence others, but women actually lose influence when they allow anger into an argument. Emaillast_img read more

Gender segregation in jobs is not rooted in early family planning

first_imgLinkedIn Pinterest Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Sharecenter_img Email Despite decades of efforts to banish the idea of “jobs for men” — construction worker, firefighter, mechanic — and “jobs for women” — teacher, flight attendant, registered nurse — almost 69 percent of workers are in occupations that are dominated by one gender or the other, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.Why does gender segregation in jobs persist?In a new study, Rice social scientist Erin Cech dispels one popular explanation: that women choose more “flexible” (female-dominated) career fields that better accommodate their plans to raise children, while men choose “provider-friendly” (male-dominated) career fields that maximize their earning power to support their families. Called the “family plans thesis,” this idea is embedded in several economic, sociological and socio-psychological explanations of occupational gender segregation. “Proponents of this perspective see segregation as the outcome of men’s and women’s deliberate, economically rational decision-making to make the best use of their educational investments in light of their family plans,” said Cech, an assistant professor of sociology.For the study, which will be published in the journal Gender & Society, Cech interviewed 100 students enrolled in a variety of majors at three universities. She found that for the majority of men (61 percent) and women (52 percent), their plans to have a family did not play any part in their choice of a major or career field.“For many students, such plans are seen as distant in time from their immediate career decisions,” she said. “Only a quarter of men (and a handful of women) discuss a planned-provider role as a partial motive in their occupational choices, and only seven women (13 percent) and one man (2 percent) describe choosing occupational paths in part to accommodate planned caregiving responsibilities.” Even those who did seem to act in accordance with the family-plans thesis didn’t contribute more extensively to gender segregation than their peers, she said. “Respondents who plan to play a provider role are not more likely to be enrolled in men-dominated academic majors, while students who anticipate a caregiving role are not more likely to be enrolled in women-dominated majors.”The findings highlight the theoretical problem of mistaking broader labor-market processes as the intended result of men’s and women’s preferences, absent any cultural and structural constraints on such preferences, Cech said.“The family plans thesis, in other words, seems to explain away occupational segregation as the result of individualistic, free choices,” she said. “Ironically the family plans thesis itself may help reproduce occupational segregation by impacting how parents encourage their children, how teachers advise students and how employers think about employees.“By reinforcing the family plans thesis without careful examination of its assumptions, scholars risk contributing to gender segregation by lending legitimacy to popular assumptions that blame women for ‘preferring’ lower-paid, lower-status occupations because such fields are presumed to accommodate women’s desired caregiving roles.”The students Cech interviewed — 56 women and 44 men — were enrolled at Stanford University (35 students), the University of Houston (30 students) and Montana State University (35 students). Twenty-five percent were African-American, 14 percent Hispanic, 14 percent Asian or Asian-American, 53 percent white and 11 percent another race or ethnicity. Twenty percent (11 women, 9 men) were married or in long-term partnerships, but none had children. Eight students identified as nonheterosexual. Students were enrolled in a variety of college majors, with half in STEM — science, technology, engineering and math-related — fields. Forty-nine women (88 percent) and 40 men (91 percent) expected to have children in the future. The remainder of respondents planned to remain childless.Cech asked students questions about why they chose their major, what they planned to do after graduation and the variety of factors they considered when making those decisions. She also asked them whether they planned to have a family and whether their thoughts about a family influenced their major or postgraduation career choice in any way.Depending on their answers, the students were categorized in the study in one of three ways: as “accommodating a caregiver role” if they mentioned considerations of caregiving responsibilities in making college and career decisions, as “accommodating a provider role” if they cited considerations of wanting a provider-friendly occupation, or as “not accommodating any role.”Of those who said their plans to have a family did not play a role in the career decision-making, a quarter (31 percent of men and 18 percent of women) said that their career decisions stemmed from a “me first, family later” perspective. Other respondents said that their careers would dictate the composition of their families, not the other way around.Five women, but no men, noted that they expect it will be difficult to balance work and caregiving demands, but believe they can “have both,” are “not too worried” and expressed confidence that they can “manage to balance them once they get to that stage.”Ten men factored a planned-provider role into their career decisions to some extent. Seven women said that they make career decisions in part by considering fields that will allow them to provide for the family financially.Thirteen women and three men said that they selected particular occupations in part because they believe that such jobs will provide the flexibility and career structures they desire to balance work with planned caregiving responsibilities.Only one student — a woman at Montana State — gave flexibility as the “most important” consideration in her career decisions.“Of course, gendered division of work and family responsibilities among heterosexual couples remains commonplace,” Cech said. “These results point to the need to understand how people who have not deliberately incorporated family plans into their early career decisions wind up down the line in circumstances that largely reproduce previous generations’ gendered division of labor — especially with women shouldering the majority of caregiving responsibilities.”Beyond that, Cech said, employers should take note of these findings. If the majority of young women and men who plan to have families expect to “work it out” when those caregiving responsibilities emerge rather than deliberately accommodating family plans, she said, employers must work harder to institute flexibility policies and re-entry programs that will retain talented workers.last_img read more

Infidelity perceptions differ between men and women

first_imgShare on Twitter New research published in Sexual & Relationship Therapy has uncovered the different ways in which men and women perceive infidelity.Infidelity can lead to relationship dissatisfaction and breakdown, though in some cases the problems may be caused by the different ways in which individuals define infidelity. The authors, based in the USA, sought to better understand potential perceptions of infidelity. They found that “women were more likely than men to identify both sexual-based and emotion-based acts as constituting infidelity.”354 undergraduate psychology students completed an online questionnaire, which aimed to assess their personality and how this related to their perceptions of infidelity and their sensitivity to rejection. The questionnaire, through different categories of question, categorised infidelity in three ways – sexual infidelity, intimate infidelity, and fantasy infidelity.The authors suggest that their finding that women were more likely to identify certain acts as infidelity is unsurprising given that the women scored higher than the men on measures of ‘communion’ – “the extent to which a person wants to form and maintain positive interpersonal bonds.”They concluded the study with suggestions for therapeutic application, including educating individuals on these gender differences to help ease anxieties. Email Pinterestcenter_img Share Share on Facebook LinkedInlast_img read more

In search of neurobiological factors for schizophrenia

first_imgShare Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Schizophrenic psychoses are a frequently occurring group of psychiatric disorders caused by a combination of biological, social and environmental factors. These disorders are associated with changes to the brain structure: for example, the hippocampus in the temporal lobe is usually smaller in affected individuals than in healthy ones. It is not yet known whether these changes to the brain structure are a result of the disorders and their accompanying medications, or whether they are already present before the onset of symptoms.Together with a research group from the University of Basel, Fabienne Harrisberger and Stefan Borgwardt examined the brain structures of individuals exhibiting an elevated risk of psychosis, and those of individuals experiencing the onset of psychotic symptoms for the first time.Initially, scientists from the Adult Psychiatric Clinic of the University Psychiatric Clinics (UPK) and the Transfaculty Research Platform Molecular and Cognitive Neurosciences (MCN) observed no appreciable difference between the hippocampi of individuals at high risk and those of patients. Pinterestcenter_img LinkedIn Email Next, together with scientists from the Transfaculty Research Platform, they investigated whether any known schizophrenia risk genes are associated with the hippocampus. This appears to be the case: the greater the number of risk genes a person possessed, the smaller the volume of their hippocampus – regardless of whether they were a high-risk study participant or a patient. This means that a group of risk genes is connected with a reduction in the size of a critical region of the brain before the disorder manifests itself.Potential for differentiated therapyThis result is significant for the understanding of neurobiological factors contributing to schizophrenia. It is well-known that none of the wider risk factors (e.g. genes, environment, unfavorable social situation) can be used to predict the onset of psychosis in a specific individual. However, the discovery may be of use for the treatment of schizophrenia.“It is quite possible that individuals with smaller hippocampi will react differently to therapy compared to those with normally developed hippocampi,” explains Prof. Stefan Borgwardt of the Neuropsychiatry and Brain Imaging Unit. Further studies to ascertain the therapeutic potential of this research are planned.The study was published in Translational Psychiatry.last_img read more

Why some men get depressed when their partners are pregnant

first_imgShare The authors report 2.3 percent of fathers (82 men) were affected by elevated ADS during their partner’s pregnancy and 4.3 percent of fathers (153 men) were affected by elevated PDS nine months after the child was born.Elevated depression symptoms for men during a partner’s pregnancy were associated with perceived stress and fair to poor health, while elevated depression symptoms in fathers after a child’s birth were associated with perceived stress in pregnancy, no longer being in a relationship with the mother, having fair to poor health, being unemployed and having a history of depression, according to the article.Limitations of the study include that the results may not be generalizable to the first and second trimesters of pregnancy or to the period immediately following the child’s birth.“Only relatively recently has the influence of fathers on children been recognized as vital for adaptive psychosocial and cognitive development. Given that paternal depression can have direct or indirect effects on children, it is important to recognize and treat symptoms among fathers early and the first step in doing that is arguably increasing awareness among fathers about increased risks,” the article concludes. Share on Twitter Email Share on Facebookcenter_img LinkedIn Men who were stressed or in poor health had elevated depression symptoms when their partners were pregnant and nine months after the birth of their child, according to the results of a study of expectant and new fathers in New Zealand published online by JAMA Psychiatry.The research by Lisa Underwood, Ph.D., of the University of Auckland, New Zealand, and coauthors follows up on their studies of perinatal depression in mothers.The current study examined antenatal depression symptoms (ADS, before birth) and postnatal depression symptoms (PDS, after birth) in 3,523 men who completed interviews while their partner was in the third trimester of pregnancy and nine months after the birth of their child. The men were an average age of 33 at the antenatal interview. Pinterestlast_img read more

Synthetic psychedelic drug effective in reducing alcohol intake in a rodent model of addiction

first_imgShare Share on Facebook A synthetic psychedelic substance known as 2,5-dimethoxy-4-iodoamphetamine (DOI) reduces alcohol consumption in mice, according to new research published in Psychopharmacology. The findings could potentially lead to new treatment options for alcoholism.“Alcohol use disorder is one of the most devastating psychiatric diseases. It is responsible for untold human suffering and costs society billions of dollars. There is increasing hope that specialized therapy conducted with psychedelic drugs, under controlled and carefully designed conditions, may help people abstain from alcohol and provide meaningful remission rates,” explained study author Kevin S. Murnane, an assistant professor of pharmaceutical sciences at Mercer University.In the study, male mice were exposed to alcohol and then split into a high drinking group and a low drinking group based on their consumption habits. The mice were then injected with a single dose of DOI or a placebo solution. Share on Twitter LinkedIncenter_img Pinterest Email The researchers found that the psychedelic drug led to reductions in alcohol consumption in high alcohol drinking subjects. Mice injected with DOI also showed reductions in alcohol-induced place conditioning, a common measure of drug reward in animals. But DOI had no effect on overall fluid intake.The results show that “a psychedelic drug was effective in reducing alcohol drinking in laboratory animals. This supports the idea that psychedelics may be effective in humans suffering from alcohol use disorder,” Murnane told PsyPost.The researchers also found that the effects of DOI on alcohol consumption were largely reversed when mice were given another drug that selectively blocks serotonin A2 receptors.While preclinical animal models are an important starting point, there is still much to learn about the relationship between psychedelic drugs and alcohol consumption.“We must temper our enthusiasm because much additional research needs to be conducted. In particular, studies should be conducted that determine the mechanisms by which psychedelics reduce alcohol drinking. Understanding these mechanisms will allow scientists and clinicians to make psychedelics therapy as safe and effective as possible,” Murnane said.The study, “Effects of the synthetic psychedelic 2,5-dimethoxy-4-iodoamphetamine (DOI) on ethanol consumption and place conditioning in male mice“, was authored by Aboagyewaah Oppong-Damoah, Kristen E. Curry, Bruce E. Blough, Kenner C. Rice, and Kevin S. Murnane.last_img read more

Belief in chloroquine’s effectiveness is linked to reduced willingness to receive COVID-19 vaccine, study finds

first_imgShare “When the COVID-19 pandemic became a major issue in France and in Europe in general, we saw that, unsurprisingly, conspiracy theories flourished on social media. With my colleagues Kenzo Nera and Sylvain Delouvée (my PhD supervisor), we conducted a couple of studies to better understand this phenomenon and its potential detrimental consequences on the management of the pandemic,” he explained.The researchers conducted two online surveys in March and April, which included 805 participants in total. The findings indicated that “conspiracy beliefs about COVID-19 are popular,” Bertin said.In addition, the researchers found that heightened conspiracy mentality and endorsement of COVID-19 conspiracy theories, such as the belief that virus is a Chinese bioweapon, were associated with more negative attitudes towards vaccinations in general and reduced vaccination intentions.“There is a strong negative correlation between these beliefs and intention to get vaccinated against COVID-19 when a vaccine will be available, so that the more one believes in conspiracy theories about COVID-19, the less one expresses the willingness to get vaccinated against the disease. This relation held regardless of the specific content of the conspiracy theories: Indeed, the COVID-19 conspiracy theories we included in our studies were unrelated to vaccination, and only one of them referred to pharmaceutical companies,” Bertin told PsyPost.Popular pro-chloroquine conspiracy theories, including the belief that pharmaceutical companies are avoiding chloroquine-based treatments to protect their financial interests, were also associated with more negative attitudes towards vaccinations and reduced vaccination intentions.Anecdotal reports and poorly controlled clinical trials raised hopes that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine could be used as potential treatments for COVID-19. Google searches to buy chloroquine spiked by 442% after Donald Trump and Elon Musk endorsed the drug in March.But additional research has failed to find evidence that the medications effectively inhibit the respiratory infection caused by SARS-CoV-2.“Attitude toward chloroquine-based treatment, which has been advocated by various scientists (e.g. French infectious disease specialist Didier Raoult) and political figures (e.g. Donald Trump and Jair Bolsonaro), was positively correlated with COVID-19 conspiracy beliefs, and negatively correlated with intention to get vaccinated against COVID-19,” Bertin said.“Interestingly, it is as if chloroquine is perceived as an alternative medicine challenging ‘Big Pharma’, whereas in France, the main chloroquine producer is the multinational pharmaceutical company, Sanofi!”The study — like all research — includes some limitations.“From our findings, we cannot say that COVID-19 conspiracy beliefs are decreasing COVID-19 vaccination intention, or if it is the other way around (past literature, however, suggests that the former causal interpretation is relevant),” Bertin said.“Furthermore, we do not know if participants refusal of being hypothetically vaccinated is solely due to their endorsement of conspiracy beliefs, or also partly to the idea that a (too) quickly commercialized vaccine would not be safe enough, which was not measured in our studies.”But the new findings are in line with previous research, which has found that heightened conspiracy mentality is associated with a reduced willingness to follow official guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. One study even found conspiracy beliefs are linked to lower levels of social distancing over time.Research has also found that heightened conspiracy mentality is associated with increased trust in non-established medical treatments, such as homeopathy and acupuncture.“We believe that future research should investigate practical ways to mitigate the detrimental effects of conspiracy beliefs on sanitary behaviors. It might also be interesting to investigate how one can be so distrustful of vaccines while being at the same time trustful of alternative remedies whose efficacy remains unproven,” Bertin said.He also warned that conspiracy theories should not be dismissed as fringe.“It is important to understand that believing in conspiracy theories, although being consequential, is not a mark of stupidity or gullibility. There are complex psychological and social motives underlying these beliefs, such as dealing with uncertainties or anticipating threats,” Bertin said.The study, “Conspiracy Beliefs, Rejection of Vaccination, and Support for hydroxychloroquine: A Conceptual Replication-Extension in the COVID-19 Pandemic Context“, was authored by Paul Bertin, Kenzo Nera, and Sylvain Delouvée.(Image by visuals3Dde from Pixabay) Share on Facebook People who believe that the antimalarial drug chloroquine is an effective remedy against COVID-19 are less likely to say they will receive a vaccination for the virus when one is available, according to new research published in Frontiers in Psychology.The new study indicates that various conspiracy theories about COVID-19 are associated with a reduced willingness to vaccinate.The lead author of the study, Paul Bertin (@PaulBertin_), is a PhD student at the Université Côte d’Azur in France who has been studying conspiracy theories and their relations to group identities. LinkedIncenter_img Email Pinterest Share on Twitterlast_img read more