# Probability Discounting of Seeking Primary Care Treatment and Flu Vaccinations

## Location

College of Behavioral and Social Sciences (CBSS)

## Session Format

Oral Presentation

## Abstract

Probability discounting conceptualizes how outcomes lose value as they become less likely to occur. This study used probability discounting as a translational paradigm to understand how people make decisions about seeking out health resources. We used probability discounting to measure decision making in college students related to monetary outcomes, texting while driving, obtaining a flu shot, and visiting a primary care physician when feeling ill. For each respective discounting scenario, we manipulated the likelihood of receiving a sum of money, the likelihood of a car crash, the likelihood of a flu shot being effective, and hypothetical health symptoms (e.g., sore throat, cough). varied systematically in each scenario in order to find what level of danger or effectiveness would make participants be more willing to make positive decisions. How participants reported their frequency of obtaining a flu shot was correlated with discounting of obtaining a flu shot (r = .458, p < .000). A repeated measures ANOVA showed how participants discounted different scenarios was significantly different (F = 265.05, p < .000). This shows how participants make decisions for their health is discounted differently from how they discount different things like money, or texting while driving.

## Presentation Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

## Share

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Probability Discounting of Seeking Primary Care Treatment and Flu Vaccinations

College of Behavioral and Social Sciences (CBSS)

Probability discounting conceptualizes how outcomes lose value as they become less likely to occur. This study used probability discounting as a translational paradigm to understand how people make decisions about seeking out health resources. We used probability discounting to measure decision making in college students related to monetary outcomes, texting while driving, obtaining a flu shot, and visiting a primary care physician when feeling ill. For each respective discounting scenario, we manipulated the likelihood of receiving a sum of money, the likelihood of a car crash, the likelihood of a flu shot being effective, and hypothetical health symptoms (e.g., sore throat, cough). varied systematically in each scenario in order to find what level of danger or effectiveness would make participants be more willing to make positive decisions. How participants reported their frequency of obtaining a flu shot was correlated with discounting of obtaining a flu shot (r = .458, p < .000). A repeated measures ANOVA showed how participants discounted different scenarios was significantly different (F = 265.05, p < .000). This shows how participants make decisions for their health is discounted differently from how they discount different things like money, or texting while driving.