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Vaccine. 2012 Aug 31;30(40):5871-4. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.06.082. Epub 2012 Jul 10.

Acceptance of a post-partum influenza vaccination (cocooning) strategy for neonates in Greece.

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  • 1Department for Interventions in Health-Care Facilities, Hellenic Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Athens, Greece.


Young infants are at increased risk for influenza-associated serious illness, onset of complications, utilization of health-care services, and hospitalization. We investigated the feasibility and acceptance of an influenza vaccination (cocooning) strategy by household contacts implemented in a maternity hospital and the neonatal unit of a pediatric hospital in Athens. A total of 224 mothers (mean age: 30.2 years) who gave birth to 242 neonates were studied. Of them, 165 (73.7%) mothers were vaccinated. Multiple logistic regression revealed that statistically significant factors associated with increased vaccination rates among mothers were: being of Roma origin (p-value=0.002), being an immigrant (p-value=0.025), giving birth to a neonate with birth weight <2500g (p-value=0.012), and residing in a family with ≥4 family members (p-value=0.017). Of the 224 fathers, 125 (55.8%) received the influenza vaccine. Fathers of neonates whose mothers were vaccinated had 6-fold higher vaccination rates compared to fathers of neonates whose mothers refused vaccination (p-value<0.001). Overall, influenza vaccine was administered to 348 (46.9%) of a total of 742 household contacts of the 242 neonates. Upon entering the 2011-2012 influenza season, 51 (22.7%) of 224 families had all household contacts vaccinated against influenza (complete cocoon). Among parents, the statement "I do not want to receive the vaccine" was the prevalent reason for declining influenza vaccination, followed by the misconception "I am not at risk for contacting influenza" (41.1% and 38.2%, respectively).

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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