Marian Smith somehow missed getting a flu shot this year, which is unlike her — in the past, she always got one.
The 58-year-old Washington D.C. resident says it was easier to remember to get it when the vaccine was provided at a clinic at work. But now the clinic is a bus ride away, and getting the shot wasn’t at the top of her mind.
“Of course, I could get it right here at the grocery store,” Smith tells NPR, as she rushes to pick up her lunch. “But I just didn’t get it — I don’t know, I can’t tell you why.”
Maybe a reminder from her doctor would have been the nudge she needed. A review study published by the Cochrane Library this month suggests that reminding people when their vaccinations are due or overdue increases the number of people who get immunized.
The team of researchers reviewed 75 studies from 10 countries. Fifty-eight were performed in the U.S.; the remainder were conducted in Australasia, Europe and Africa.