Perceptions matter: Beliefs about influenza vaccine and vaccination behavior among elderly white, black and Hispanic Americans
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, Immunization Services Division, 1600 Clifton Road MS-A19, Atlanta, GA 30030, United States. Electronic address: .Vaccine (Impact Factor: 3.62). 08/2012; 30(48). DOI: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.08.036
BACKGROUND: Knowledge and beliefs about influenza vaccine that differ across racial or ethnic groups may promote racial or ethnic disparities in vaccination. OBJECTIVE: To identify associations between vaccination behavior and personal beliefs about influenza vaccine by race or ethnicity and education levels among the U.S. elderly population. METHODS: Data from a national telephone survey conducted in 2004 were used for this study. Reponses for 3875 adults ≥65 years of age were analyzed using logistic regression methods. RESULTS: Racial and ethnic differences in beliefs were observed. For example, whites were more likely to believe influenza vaccine is very effective in preventing influenza compared to blacks and Hispanics (whites, 60%; blacks, 47%, and Hispanics, 51%, p<0.01). Among adults who believed the vaccine is very effective, self-reported vaccination was substantially higher across all racial/ethnic groups (whites, 93%; blacks, 76%; Hispanics, 78%) compared to adults who believed the vaccine was only somewhat effective (whites 67%; blacks 61%, Hispanics 61%). Also, vaccination coverage differed by education level and personal beliefs of whites, blacks, and Hispanics. CONCLUSIONS: Knowledge and beliefs about influenza vaccine may be important determinants of influenza vaccination among racial/ethnic groups. Strategies to increase coverage should highlight the burden of influenza disease in racial and ethnic populations, the benefits and safety of vaccinations and personal vulnerability to influenza disease if not vaccinated. For greater effectiveness, factors associated with the education levels of some communities may need to be considered when developing or implementing new strategies that target specific racial or ethnic groups.
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ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study is to identify whether protective and risk health behaviors are more common among African Americans with spinal cord injury (SCI) compared with African Americans in the general population. Mail-in surveys were collected from 252 adult participants with SCI. Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System data from 2009 was downloaded. Participants with SCI were more likely to report currently smoking. Among those who reported currently smoking, persons with SCI were less likely to report ever trying to quit. Those with SCI were also more likely to report consuming alcohol and binge drinking in the past month. Participants with SCI were more likely to receive a flu shot/spray in the past year than to have ever received a pneumonia vaccine. Conversely, those with SCI were less likely to report ever having their blood cholesterol checked. Results of this study suggest that, consistent with previous research, individuals with SCI focused their preventive health behaviors on conditions consistent with SCI prophylactic standard of care (e.g., flu shots and pneumonia vaccines), as compared to behaviors intended to prevent chronic diseases consistent with the overall population.
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ABSTRACT: Health at birth is an important predictor of long-term outcomes, including education, income, and disability. Recent evidence suggests that maternal disadvantage leads to worse health at birth through poor health behaviors; exposure to harmful environmental factors; worse access to medical care, including family planning; and worse underlying maternal health. With increasing inequality, those at the bottom of the distribution now face relatively worse economic conditions, but newborn health among the most disadvantaged has actually improved. The most likely explanation is increasing knowledge about determinants of infant health and how to protect it along with public policies that put this knowledge into practice.
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