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Mil Med. 2017 Sep;182(9):e1810-e1815. doi: 10.7205/MILMED-D-16-00442.

The Impact of Vaccine Refusal on Physician Office Visits During the Subsequent 12 Months.

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Department of Pediatrics, Infectious Diseases, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20889.
Department of Sociology, University At Albany, 1400 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12222.
Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Research, Keller Army Community Hospital, 900 Washington Road, West Point, NY 10996.
Department of Pediatrics, Mercy Medical Center, 345 Saint Paul Pl, Baltimore, MD 21202.


We hypothesized that families who are nonadherent to the routine vaccination schedule (RVS) present less frequently for physician visits. We conducted a retrospective chart review to compare the number of visits made over the subsequent 12-month period by families that refused the RVS versus those who were adherent. Subjects were aged 0 to 4 years, enrolled to Keller Army Hospital, and had a diagnosis indicating the RVS was refused. Age-matched controls, who were adherent to the RVS, were randomly chosen for each case. Subjects made significantly more total visits than CASES: 7 (interquartile range [IQR] = 1-20) versus 6 (IQR = 2-17), p = 0.0049. When each visit type was compared independently, there was no significant difference in the number of acute (p = 0.494) or emergency department (p = 0.077) visits between groups. However, subjects who refused to follow the RVS made significantly fewer routine care visits during the 1-year follow-up period compared to those that adhered to the RVS (p < 0.001).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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