Understanding Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behaviors Related to Influenza and the Influenza Vaccine in US-Mexico Border Communities.

Border Infectious Disease Surveillance, San Diego County Office of Border Health, 3851 Rosecrans St, Suite 715, San Diego, CA, 92110, USA, .
Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health (Impact Factor: 1.16). 06/2012; 15(4). DOI: 10.1007/s10903-012-9652-0
Source: PubMed


Hispanics are less likely to receive the influenza vaccine compared to other racial and ethnic groups in the US. Hispanic residents of the US-Mexico border region may have differing health beliefs and behaviors, and their cross-border mobility impacts disease control. To assess beliefs and behaviors regarding influenza prevention and control among border populations, surveys were conducted at border clinics. Of 197 respondents, 34 % reported conditions for which vaccination is indicated, and travel to Mexico was common. Few (35 %) believed influenza could make them 'very sick', and 76 % believed they should take antibiotics to treat influenza. Influenza vaccine awareness was high, and considered important, but only 36 % reported recent vaccination. The belief that influenza vaccination is 'very important' was strongly associated with recent vaccination; "Didn't think about it" was the most common reason for being un-vaccinated. Misconceptions about influenza risk, prevention and treatment were common in this Hispanic border population; improved educational efforts and reminder systems could impact vaccination behaviors.

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