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Am J Infect Control. 2007 Feb;35(1):56-61.

Attitudes of health care workers to influenza vaccination: why are they not vaccinated?

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Virology Laboratory, Institute of Tropical Medicine of University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.



Compliance rates with influenza vaccination among health care workers (HCW) are historically low. Although a safe and effective vaccine is available, the reasons for such poor compliance are not well understood.


After a campaign encouraging HWC to vaccinate against influenza, we conducted an epidemiologic survey to evaluate the reasons for compliance and accompanied the impact of these measures (campaign and questionnaire) during the subsequent 2 years.


Compliance rate was 34.4%. Multivariate analysis showed that "older age" (P = .008), "believing that most departmental colleagues had been vaccinated" (P < .0001), and "having cared for patients suffering from severe influenza" (P = .031) were significantly associated with compliance with influenza vaccination. The main reason given for being vaccinated was "individual protection" and, to a lesser extent, "protection for the patient." In subsequent years, compliance rates among those participating in the survey fell to 20.2% in 2004, when the only measure taken was the questionnaire, and to 12.75% in 2005, when no educational intervention was scheduled.


We conclude that a better understanding of HCW's negative attitude regarding influenza vaccination is needed as are more appealing and convincing continuous education programs, to ensure motivation for influenza vaccination over a longer period.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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