Introduction: To minimize nocebo effects, it may be possible to employ authorized concealment, in which clinicians tell patients about the nocebo phenomenon and ask if they would prefer not to be informed about mild treatment side effects. Objective: The objective of the study was to understand public evaluations of authorized concealment for reducing nocebo effects. Methods: An online cross-sectional survey was completed by a demographically diverse US national community sample between June 2 and 6, 2023. Participants were 1,012 adults residing in 48 states, ages ranging from 18 to 94 (mean = 43.2), 65.4% regularly taking medication, and 66.6% reporting a chronic physical or mental health condition. After learning about nocebo effects, participants rated and estimated their likelihood of consenting to four potential methods for authorized concealment of mild side effects. The four methods were ranked for preference and ranked again with the options of (1) receiving all side-effect information and (2) having the opportunity to select among disclosure methods. Results: A majority of participants (86.2%) positively endorsed at least one authorized concealment method and 88.2% estimated they would consent to at least one method. Authorized concealment in which individuals learned only the most common side effects or had side-effect information available online received more positive ratings and rankings. A final ranking yielded preferences for receiving all side-effect information (30.4%) and having the opportunity to select side-effect disclosure method (31.8%). Conclusions: Our study suggests that many in the public could be open to authorized concealment for mild side effects when it is explained in reference to nocebo effects.

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