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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2017 Mar;56(3):238-246. doi: 10.1177/0009922816649001. Epub 2016 Jul 20.

Parents' Perspectives on How to Improve the Childhood Vaccination Process.

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1 Division of Research, Kaiser Permanente Northern California, Oakland, CA, USA.
2 Deaprtment of Health Behavior and Health Education, Department of Medicine, and Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.
3 Center for Health Decision Science, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA.


Few national studies have asked parents how to improve the childhood vaccination process. We surveyed a nationally representative online panel of parents on how to improve this process, rationales for nonstandard approaches, and alternatives to the standard schedule. Twelve percent of the 1222 respondents reported using nonstandard approaches: 3.2% used a specific schedule, 6.0% had no specific schedule, and 2.5% declined all vaccinations. The most common rationales were that too many vaccines are given at once, and discomfort with vaccine ingredients. Regarding how to improve the process, parents using the standard schedule most often said nothing could be improved (51%), or better vaccine information (22%). Those using nonstandard approaches most often would have liked more choice (40%) or better vaccine information (26%). Parents' experiences with the vaccination process could be improved by offering information prior to visits, giving more information about side effects, and allowing more flexibility about vaccine scheduling.


decision making; immunizations; parent preferences; quality of care; vaccines

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