Steve Robison, Immunization Program, Oregon DHS, Health Services, 800 NE Oregon Street, Suite 370, Portland, OR, USA, James A. Gaudino, Oregon Immunization Program, State of Oregon Department of Human Services, 800 NE Oregon Street, Suite 370, Portland, OR, USA, Martha Priedeman Skiles, Immunization Program, Office of Family Health, State of Oregon Dept of Human Services, 800 NE Oregon Street, Suite 370, Portland, OR, USA, and Collette M. Young, Immunization Program, Oregon Department of Human Services, 800 NE Oregon Street, Suite 370, Portland, OR, USA.
Learning Objectives for this Presentation: By the end of the presentation participants will be able to understand the relation between vaccine hesitancy and school exemptions using a five item attitudinal measure developed by the Oregon Immunization Program.
Background: General population surveys can be problematic for measuring uncommon items. For measuring vaccine hesitancy, a survey is likely to hit few of a rarer anti-vaccine or high-hesitancy population, yet is likely to contain many with lower levels of concern or awareness of anti-vaccine claims. This lower concern population is more likely to be amenable to traditional education or provider advice. Distinguishing a more easily reachable population of vaccine hesitant parents from those with a more firm anti-vaccine attitude is one need for designing effective interventions.
Objectives: To present an attitudinal-based measure of vaccine hesitancy for use in population surveys that was derived from a population with known exemption statuses and vaccination attitudes.
Methods: The Oregon Parental Exemption Survey was a multi-stage cluster survey of Oregon households with elementary students, with selection based on known exemption status. A battery of five attitudinal items were considered in different weightings and systems for producing a dichotomous vaccine hesitancy variable and a continuous scale. All results were examined for sensitivity and specificity against outcome measures including school exemptions.
Results: The presented measure of vaccine hesitancy possesses a high degree of association against school exemptions in an Oregon population, (OR=57.4). The design of this measure allows for the segmentation of a survey population by levels of vaccine resistance. In addition adequate levels of specificity and sensitivity were obtained by this measure for use beyond exploratory analysis.
Conclusions: The Oregon vaccine hesitancy scale was shown in this study to have strong predictive value, and to have utility in detecting vaccine-hesitancy levels among different survey groups.