Parental Intentions to Seek Influenza Vaccination for Children <5 Years of Age
Sarah J. Clark1, Dianne C. Singer1, Acham Gebremariam2, and Matthew Davis1. (1) Child Health Evaluation and Research (CHEAR) Unit, University of Michigan, University of Michigan, 300 North Ingalls room 6E06, Ann Arbor, MI, MI, USA, (2) Division of General Pediatrics, University of Michigan, 300 North Ingalls Room 627, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
Learning Objectives for this Presentation: By the end of the presentation participants will be able to better understand parental intentions for children's receipt of influenza vaccine.
Background: Influenza vaccination is now recommended children 6 months to 5 years.
Objectives: To explore parents' intentions to seek influenza vaccine for children <5 years of age.
Methods: We recruited a nationally representative sample of adults via a Web-enabled survey in July-August 2007. Respondents from households with children <5 years of age answered questions about their intention to seek influenza vaccine for themselves and their children during the 2007-08 influenza season. Respondents were prompted with information about either CDC influenza recommendations or higher influenza hospitalization rates for children <5 years.
Results: Overall 65% of parents intended to seek influenza vaccine for their children <5 years, with no difference between those who received information about the CDC recommendation vs hospitalization rates. However, intention to seek influenza vaccine was higher among parents of children with chronic conditions. Among parents who intend to receive influenza vaccine themselves, 95% also plan to have their children vaccinated; in contrast, among parents who do not intend to receive influenza vaccine themselves, only 45% plan to have their children vaccinated. Common reasons for not seeking influenza vaccine for children were: children are healthy/don't need vaccine (39%); vaccine does not protect against the flu (28%); if children get the flu, there are medicines to treat it (27%); and children can get the flu from the flu shot (17%).
Conclusions: A higher-than-expected proportion of parents in this sample intended to seek influenza vaccine for their children <5 years; this rate may have been influenced by the informational messages included in the survey. A strong link was seen between parental intentions for themselves and their children related to influenza vaccine.