[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Despite strong evidence of the effectiveness of influenza vaccination, immunization rates have reached a plateau that is below the 2010 national goals. Our objective was to identify facilitators of, and barriers to, vaccination in diverse groups of older patients.
A survey was conducted in 2000 by computer-assisted telephone interviewing of patients from inner-city health centers, Veterans Affairs (VA) outpatient clinics, rural practices, and suburban practices. The inclusion criteria were age > or =66 years and an office visit after September 30, 1998.
Overall, 1007 (73%) interviews were completed among 1383 patients. Influenza vaccination rates were 91% at VA clinics, 79% at rural practices, 79% at suburban practices, and 67% at inner-city health centers. There was substantial variability in vaccination rates among practices, except at the VA. Nearly all persons who were vaccinated reported that their physicians recommended influenza vaccinations, compared with 63% of unvaccinated patients (P <0.001). Thirty-eight percent of unvaccinated patients were concerned that they would get influenza from the vaccine, compared with only 6% of vaccinated persons (P <0.001). Sixty-three percent of those vaccinated, in contrast with 22% of unvaccinated persons, thought that an unvaccinated person would probably contract influenza (P <0.001).
Older patients need intentional messages from physicians that recommend vaccination. Furthermore, more patient education is needed to counter myths about adverse reactions.
The American Journal of Medicine 01/2003; 114(1):31-8. · 4.77 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although varicella vaccine was licensed in 1995, immunization rates are only moderate. This study identifies factors associated with physician self-reported likelihood of recommending varicella vaccination to patients.
Two hundred eighty-one Minnesota and Pennsylvania primary care physicians who participated in surveys on barriers to vaccination in 1990-1991 and 1993 were surveyed in 1999, assessing physicians' beliefs about varicella disease and vaccine and their self-reported likelihood of recommending varicella vaccine to three age groups of children.
Most (79, 80, and 83%) were likely to recommend varicella vaccine for 12- to 18-month old, 4- to 6-year-old, and 11- to 12-year old children, respectively, and most (78%) agreed with national recommendations to vaccinate. If physicians believed that the vaccine would fail, they were less likely to recommend varicella vaccination for 12- to 18-month-old (70% vs 85%, P = 0.001) and 4- to 6-year-old (83% vs 85%, P = 0.001) children, than if they believed in its efficacy. Pediatricians were more likely to recommend varicella vaccine than were family physicians and general practitioners (P < 0.01).
Physicians, especially pediatricians, report that they recommend varicella vaccination when they agree with national recommendations, believe in the efficacy of the vaccine, and perceive that parents want the vaccine for their children.
Preventive Medicine 08/2002; 35(2):135-42. · 3.50 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Immunization rates for influenza and pneumococcal vaccines among the elderly (especially minority elderly) are below desired levels. We sought to answer 4 questions: (1) What factors explain most missed immunizations? (2) How are patient beliefs and practices regarding adult immunization affected by racial or cultural factors? (3) How are immunizations and patient beliefs affected by physician, organizational, and operational factors? and (4) Based on the relationships identified, can typologies be created that foster the tailoring of interventions to improve immunization rates?
A multidisciplinary team chose the PRECEDE-PROCEED framework, the Awareness-to-Adherence model of clinician response to guidelines, and the Triandis model of consumer decision making as the best models to assess barriers to and facilitators of immunization. Our data collection methods included focus groups, face-to-face and telephone interviews, self-administered surveys, site visits, participant observation, and medical record review.
To encounter a broad spectrum of patients, facilities, systems, and interventions, we sampled from 4 strata: inner-city neighborhood health centers, clinics in Veterans Administration facilities, rural practices in a network, and urban/suburban practices in a network. In stage 1, a stratified random cluster sample of 60 primary care clinicians was selected, 15 in each of the strata. In stage 2, a random sample of 15 patients was selected from each clinician's list of patients, aiming for 900 total interviews.
This multicomponent approach is well suited to identifying barriers to and facilitators of adult immunizations among a variety of populations, including the disadvantaged.
The Journal of family practice 09/2001; 50(8):703. · 0.67 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Started in late 1994, the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program is a major entitlement program that provides states with free vaccines for disadvantaged children. Some evaluation studies have been conducted, but they do not include individually matched pre-post comparisons of physician responses. This project studied the effect of the VFC on the physician likelihood of referring children to public vaccine clinics for immunizations.
In 1999, trained personnel conducted a survey of a cohort of physicians who previously participated in surveys on barriers to childhood vaccination conducted before VFC implementation. Responses were matched, and pre- versus post-VFC comparisons were made.
Minnesota and Pennsylvania primary care physicians selected by stratified random sampling and initially studied in 1990 to 1991 and 1993, respectively.
Likelihood of referral of a child to a public vaccine clinic.
On a scale of 0 to 10, physician likelihood of referring an uninsured child decreased by a mean of 1.9 (95% confidence interval: 1.2-2.5) from pre- to post-VFC. Two fifths (45%) of physicians reported that the VFC decreased the number of referrals from their practice to public vaccine clinics and 50% gave intermediate responses. Among physicians who participate in VFC, only 9% were likely to refer a Medicaid-insured child in contrast to 44% of those not participating.
Physicians' reported referral and likelihood of referring Medicaid-insured and uninsured children has decreased because of VFC in Minnesota and Pennsylvania.vaccination/economics, vaccination/legislation and jurisprudence, immunization programs/economics, immunization programs/utilization, vaccines/economics, Medicaid/economics, national health programs United States, child health services.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Concerns about financial barriers to vaccination led to the creation of the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program, which provides free vaccines to states for disadvantaged children. Our objective was to understand the effect of free vaccine and insurance on pediatric nurse practitioners' (PNPs) likelihood of referring children to public vaccine clinics. Although referral from the medical home to public vaccine clinics is preferable to not vaccinating, there are disadvantages, including the potential for windows of inadequate protection and fragmentation of care.
A standardized survey was conducted by trained personnel using computer-assisted telephone interviewing. We interviewed a national random sample of primary care PNPs in 1997.
In 1997, 252 of 271 (93%) directly contacted PNPs were interviewed. The percentage of respondents receiving free vaccines was 82%. Among PNPs not receiving free vaccines, the percentages stating that they were likely to refer insured, Medicaid insured, and uninsured children to public vaccine clinics were 7%, 27%, and 67%, respectively. In contrast, among PNPs receiving free vaccines, only 46% would refer an uninsured child and 10% a Medicaid child.
Most respondents received free vaccine supplies in 1997. Based on current PNP data and previous physician data, most clinicians who do not receive free vaccine supplies are likely to refer uninsured children to public vaccine clinics. In contrast, clinicians who receive free vaccine supplies are much more likely to vaccinate uninsured and Medicaid-insured children.
Maternal and Child Health Journal 04/2000; 4(1):53-8. · 2.24 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To understand physician concerns about litigation and beliefs regarding vaccine safety.
A stratified random sample of family physicians, pediatricians, and general practitioners younger than 65 years who were in office-based practices across the United States was selected from the American Medical Association list that includes nonmembers. A standardized telephone survey was conducted by trained interviewers in 1995.
Physicians seeing 5 or more patients per week younger than 6 years and having 50% or more primary care patients were eligible for the study.
Of the 1236 physicians who were surveyed, 32% and 13% overestimated the risk for serious adverse effects related to pertussis and measles vaccines, respectively. Among physicians who thought that serious adverse effects from diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and pertussis vaccine (DTP) were unlikely, 15% were highly concerned about litigation; however, among those with higher ratings of the likelihood of serious adverse effects, 38% were highly concerned about vaccine litigation (P < .01). Of those aware of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, only 41% believed that it afforded a high level of liability protection; 22% believed that it gives little protection, and 37% gave an intermediate answer. Among physicians highly concerned about vaccine litigation, 22% were unlikely to recommend the third dose of DTP for a child with a fever of 39.4 degrees C and no other symptoms after the second dose of DTP, whereas among those expressing little concern about litigation, only 12% were unlikely to vaccinate (P < .05). Although some physicians were concerned about litigation, most (86%) encouraged vaccination even if a parent was argumentative about possible adverse effects.
Physicians' perceptions about the risk for adverse effects and protection afforded by the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program influence their concern about litigation and, to a lesser extent, their reported likelihood to administer immunizations.
Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine 01/1998; 152(1):12-9. · 4.28 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Concerns about financial barriers to vaccination led to the development of the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program, which provides free vaccines to states for children who are uninsured, Medicaid eligible, or Native American or Native Alaskan.
To understand the effect of economic factors on physician likelihood of referring children to public vaccine clinics for immunizations and to evaluate the VFC program.
A standardized survey was conducted in 1995 by trained personnel using computer-assisted telephone interviewing.
A stratified random sample of family physicians, pediatricians, and general practitioners younger than 65 years who were in office-based practices across the United States.
Likelihood of referral of a child to a health department for vaccination by child's insurance status and by the physician's receipt of free vaccines.
Of the 1769 physicians with whom an interviewer spoke, 1236 participated. Most respondents (66%) were likely to refer an uninsured child to the health department for vaccination, whereas only 8% were likely to refer a child who had insurance that covers vaccination. The majority (58%) of physicians reported differential referral based on insurance status. Among physicians who received free vaccine supplies from the VFC program or elsewhere, 44% were likely to refer an uninsured child whereas 90% of those not receiving free vaccine were likely to refer the same child (P<.001). In regression analysis, the receipt of free vaccine supplies accounted for 24% of the variance in the likelihood to refer an uninsured child for vaccination.
Physicians receiving free vaccine supplies report being less likely to refer children to public clinics for vaccinations.
JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association 09/1997; 278(12):996-1000. · 29.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The hospital admission decision directly influences the magnitude of resource use in patients with community-acquired pneumonia, yet little information exists on how medical practitioners make this decision.
To determine which factors medical practitioners consider in making the hospital admission decision and which health care services they believe would allow ambulatory treatment of low-risk hospitalized patients with community-acquired pneumonia.
Medical practitioners responsible for the hospital admission decision for low-risk patients with community-acquired pneumonia were asked to describe patient characteristics at initial examination that influenced the hospitalization decision, and to identify the health care services that would have allowed initial outpatient treatment of hospitalized patients.
A total of 292 medical practitioners completed questionnaires for 472 (76%) of the 624 low-risk patients eligible for this study. Although all patients had a predicted probability of death of less than 4%, practitioners estimated that 5% of outpatients and 41% of inpatients had an expected 30-day risk of death of more than 5%. Univariate analyses identified 3 practitioner-rated factors that were nearly universally associated with hospitalization: hypoxemia (odds ratio, 173.3; 95% confidence interval, 23.8-1265.0), inability to maintain oral intake (odds ratio, 53.3; 95% confidence interval, 12.8-222.5), and lack of patient home care support (odds ratio, 54.4; 95% confidence interval, 7.3-402.6). In patients without these 3 factors, logistic regression analysis demonstrated that practitioner-estimated risk of death of more than 5% had a strong independent association with hospitalization (odds ratio, 18.4; 95% confidence interval, 6.1-55.7). Practitioners identified home intravenous antibiotic therapy and home nursing observation as services that would have allowed outpatient treatment of more than half (68% and 59%, respectively) of the patients initially hospitalized for treatment.
Practitioners' survey responses suggest that the availability of outpatient intravenous antimicrobial therapy and home nursing care would allow outpatient care for a large proportion of low-risk patients who are hospitalized for community-acquired pneumonia. These data also suggest that methods to improve practitioners' identification of low-risk patients with community-acquired pneumonia could decrease the hospitalization of such patients. Future studies are required to help physicians identify which low-risk patients could safely be treated in the outpatient setting on the basis of clinical information readily available at presentation.
Archives of Internal Medicine 02/1997; 157(1):36-44. · 11.46 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The hospital discharge decision directly influences the length of stay in patients with community-acquired pneumonia, yet no information exists on how physicians make this decision.
To identify the factors physicians considered the factors responsible for extending length of hospital stay in clinically stable patients, and the outpatient medical services that would allow earlier hospital discharge for patients with community-acquired pneumonia.
Physicians responsible for the hospital discharge decision of patients with community-acquired pneumonia were asked to identify the factors responsible for extending stay in patients hospitalized beyond stability, and the medical services that could have allowed earlier hospital discharge to occur.
For the 418 eligible patients with community-acquired pneumonia identified during the study, 332 questionnaires (79%) were completed by 168 physicians. Physicians believed 71 patients (22%) were discharged from the hospital 1 day or more (median, 2.5 days) after reaching clinical stability. The most common factors rated as being "very important" in delaying discharge were diagnostic evaluation or treatment of comorbid illness (56%), completion of a "standard course" of antimicrobials (15%), and delays with arrangements for long-term care (14%). Among the 302 patients with available information on both length of hospital stay and stability at discharge, median length of stay was 7.0 days for the 29 low-risk patients hospitalized beyond reaching clinical stability and 5.0 days for the remaining 128 low-risk patients (P < .005); median length of stay was 12.5 days for the 42 medium- and high-risk patients hospitalized beyond reaching clinical stability and 8.0 days in the remaining 113 medium- and high-risk patients (P < .001). Frequently cited medical services that "probably" or "definitely" would have allowed earlier discharge to occur included availability of home intravenous antimicrobial infusion (26%) and home visits by nurses (20%).
Physicians believed that diagnostic evaluation or treatment of comorbid illness, completion of a standard course of antimicrobial therapy, and delays with arrangements for long-term care delayed hospital discharge in clinically stable patients. Addressing the efficiency of these aspects of inpatient medical care, as well as providing home treatment programs, could decrease the length of hospital stay in patients with community-acquired pneumonia.
Archives of Internal Medicine 02/1997; 157(1):47-56. · 11.46 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Context.
—Concerns about financial barriers to vaccination led to the development of the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program, which provides free vaccines to states for children who are uninsured, Medicaid eligible, or Native American or Native Alaskan.
JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association 01/1997; 278(12):996-000. · 29.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To measure preferences for initial outpatient vs hospital care among low-risk patients who were being actively treated for community-acquired pneumonia (CAP).
Study patients included 159 patients with CAP, 57 (36%) initially hospitalized, who were identified as being at low risk for early mortality using a validated prediction model. Subjects were enrolled from university and community health care facilities located in Boston, Mass, Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Pittsburgh, Pa, participating in the Pneumonia Patient Outcome Research Team prospective cohort study of CAP. Three utility assessment techniques (category scaling, standard gamble, and willingness to pay) were used to measure the strength of patient preferences for the site of care for low-risk CAP. At the time of initial therapy or during the early recuperative period, patient preferences were assessed across a spectrum of potential clinical outcomes using 7 standardized pneumonia clinical vignettes.
Responses to the 7 pneumonia scenarios indicated that most patients consistently preferred outpatient-based therapy. This pattern was observed regardless of whether patients had actually been treated initially at home or in a hospital. Patients (74%) who stated that they generally preferred home care for low-risk CAP were willing to pay a mean of 24% of 1 month's household income to be assured of this preference. Preference for home care, as measured by the category scaling and the willingness to pay, persisted after adjustment for sociodemographic and baseline health status covariates. Sixty nine percent of interviewed patients said that their physician alone determined whether they would be treated in the hospital or at home. Only 11% recalled being asked if they had a preference for either site of care.
Most patients, even those treated initially in a hospital, who were at low risk for mortality from CAP prefer outpatient treatment. However, most physicians appear not to involve patients in the site-of-care decision. More explicit discussion of patient preferences for the location of care would likely yield more highly valued care by patients as well as less costly treatment for CAP.
Archives of Internal Medicine 08/1996; 156(14):1565-71. · 11.46 Impact Factor