Background: To develop the strategies for promoting and disseminating H1N1 flu vaccines, a Countywide survey of knowledge and understanding of H1N and seasonal influenza vaccines was initiated.
Objectives: Measure knowledge and attitudes concerning flu vaccines. Estimate the public demands of H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccines. Understand the acceptable options to distribute the flu vaccines efficiently in order to meet the public demand. Identify the promotional message to the community.
Methods: The RDD telephone surveys were conducted to the County residents, who were aged 18 years and older in the month of August, 2009. In addition, respondents who had a child under age 18 years at the time of survey were asked to answer specific questions about influenza vaccines for his/her child in the coming season.
Results: Of 618 participants, 205 respondents had at least one child under age 18. Younger adults (18-64 years) expressed more interest in receiving the H1N1 over the seasonal flu vaccine (56% vs. 42%) compared to seniors aged 65 and older (82% vs. 83%). Overall, fourteen percent more respondents planned to get the seasonal flu vaccine than the previous season. More than 70% of parents said they would be willing to have their child get the H1N1 vaccine at school. The most common reason respondents did not want the H1N1 vaccine was that they did not have enough information about the vaccine.
Conclusions: Barriers to receiving vaccines were defined and used to develop effective messages for increasing vaccination rates. The immunization clinics at schools and other sites outside of providers’ offices were identified as opportunities to administer influenza vaccinations to children and adults. These findings highlight the value of consumer input early in large-scale planning efforts. A follow-up survey will be conducted to estimate the coverage rates of H1N1 and seasonal influenza vaccines in March, 2010.