Recent studies have described an increase in parental hesitancy regarding vaccines as well as increases in parental adoption of vaccine schedules that delay or limit receipt of recommended vaccines. This study quantifies potential prevalence and trends in alternative schedule compliance by measuring consistent shot-limiting in a metropolitan area of Oregon.
Retrospective cohort analysis using the Oregon ALERT Immunization Information System to track children born between 2003 and 2009 in the Portland metropolitan area. Joinpoint regression was used to analyze prevalence trends in consistent shot-limiting during that time period. The 2007-2009 Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine shortage and increased availability of combination vaccines were also examined for their effects on shot-limiting rates.
A total of 4502 of 97,711 (4.6%) children met the definition of consistent shot-limiters. The proportion of consistent shot-limiters in the population increased from 2.5% to 9.5% between 2006 and 2009. Compared with those with no or episodic limiting, consistent shot-limiters by 9 months of age had fewer injections (6.4 vs 10.4) but more visits when immunizations were administered (4.2 vs 3.3). However, only a small minority of shot-limiters closely adhered to published alternative schedules.
The percentage of children consistently receiving 2 or fewer vaccine injections per visit between birth and age 9 months increased threefold within a 2-year period, suggesting an increase in acceptance of non-Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices vaccine schedules in this geographic area.
"Rapid global sharing of public concerns and sometimes uncertainty around vaccines  are leading to an increase in the number of people questioning vaccines, seeking alternative vaccination schedules   and sometimes delaying or refusing vaccination . "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Vaccine “hesitancy” is an emerging term in the literature and discourse on vaccine decision-making and determinants of vaccine acceptance. It recognizes a continuum between the domains of vaccine acceptance and vaccine refusal and de-polarizes previous characterization of individuals and groups as either anti-vaccine or pro-vaccine.
The primary aims of this systematic review are to: 1) identify research on vaccine hesitancy; 2) identify determinants of vaccine hesitancy in different settings including its context-specific causes, its expression and its impact; and 3) inform the development of a model for assessing determinants of vaccine hesitancy in different settings as proposed by the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts Working Group (SAGE WG) for dealing with vaccine hesitancy.
A broad search strategy, built to capture multiple dimensions of public trust, confidence and hesitancy around vaccines, was applied across multiple databases. Peer-reviewed studies were selected for inclusion if they focused on childhood vaccines [≤7 years of age], used multivariate analyses, and were published between January 2007 and November 2012.
Our results show a variety of factors as being associated with vaccine hesitancy but they do not allow for a complete classification and confirmation of their independent and relative strength of influence. Determinants of vaccine hesitancy are complex and context-specific – varying across time, place and vaccines.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A cluster randomized trial was performed to evaluate an educational intervention to improve parental attitudes and vaccine uptake in vaccine-hesitant parents.
Two primary care sites were randomized to provide families with either usual care or an intervention (video and written information) for vaccine-hesitant parents. Eligible parents included those presenting for their child's 2-week well-child visit with performance on the Parent Attitudes about Childhood Vaccines (PACV) survey suggesting vaccine hesitancy (score ≥25). Enrollees completed PACV surveys at the 2-month well-child visit and vaccination status at 12 weeks of age was assessed. The primary outcome was the difference in PACV scores obtained at enrollment and 2 months between the 2 groups. The proportion of on-time vaccination was also compared at 12 weeks.
A total of 454 parents were approached, and 369 (81.3%) participated; 132 had PACV scores of ≥25 and were enrolled, 67 in the control group (mean PACV score 37) and 55 in the intervention group (mean PACV score 40). Two-month PACV surveys were completed by 108 (∼90%) of enrollees. Parents in the intervention group had a significant decrease in PACV score at 2 months compared to control (median difference 6.7, P = .049); this remained significant after adjustment for baseline PACV score, race/ethnicity, and income (P = .044). There was no difference in the on-time receipt of vaccines between groups at 12 weeks.
A brief educational intervention for vaccine-hesitant parents was associated with a modest but significant increase in measured parental attitudes toward vaccines.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVES To examine patterns and trends of undervaccination in children aged 2 to 24 months and to compare health care utilization rates between undervaccinated and age-appropriately vaccinated children. DESIGN Retrospective matched cohort study. SETTING Eight managed care organizations of the Vaccine Safety Datalink. PARTICIPANTS Children born between 2004 and 2008. MAIN EXPOSURE Immunization records were used to calculate the average number of days undervaccinated. Two matched cohorts were created: 1 with children who were undervaccinated for any reason and 1 with children who were undervaccinated because of parental choice. For both cohorts, undervaccinated children were matched to age-appropriately vaccinated children by birth date, managed care organization, and sex. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES Rates of undervaccination, specific patterns of undervaccination, and health care utilization rates. RESULTS Of 323 247 children born between 2004 and 2008, 48.7% were undervaccinated for at least 1 day before age 24 months. The prevalence of undervaccination and specific patterns of undervaccination increased over time (P < .001). In a matched cohort analysis, undervaccinated children had lower outpatient visit rates compared with children who were age-appropriately vaccinated (incidence rate ratio [IRR], 0.89; 95% CI, 0.89- 0.90). In contrast, undervaccinated children had increased inpatient admission rates compared with age-appropriately vaccinated children (IRR, 1.21; 95% CI, 1.18-1.23). In a second matched cohort analysis, children who were undervaccinated because of parental choice had lower rates of outpatient visits (IRR, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.93-0.95) and emergency department encounters (IRR, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.88-0.94) than age-appropriately vaccinated children. CONCLUSIONS Undervaccination appears to be an increasing trend. Undervaccinated children appear to have different health care utilization patterns compared with age-appropriately vaccinated children.
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