Researchers Find 4 Ways to Boost Healthcare Worker Flu Vaccinations

A belief in the effectiveness of seasonal flu vaccination is far more likely to sway healthcare professionals to get vaccinated than the potential to protect at risk patients from infection, according to research published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The researchers analyzed published evidence to determine what factors encouraged or discouraged healthcare professionals to opt for seasonal flu vaccination. They found 13 suitable studies, involving approximately 85,000 healthcare workers in hospitals in North America, Europe and Australia.


They found the following factors were associated with a greater than twofold increase in vaccination:

•    Belief that the vaccine really works
•    Willingness to prevent spread of the virus
•    Belief that the virus is highly contagious and that prevention is important
•    Having a family that is usually vaccinated

The researchers also found willingness to protect either themselves or patients at risk of complications if infected; a previous bout of flu; being in contact with children or having direct contact with patients had little influence on vaccination uptake.

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