Infection

, 37:197

Influenza Vaccination Compliance Among Health Care Workers in a German University Hospital

  • S. Wicker
  • H. F. Rabenau
  • H. W. Doerr
  • R. Allwinn
Clinical and Epidemiological Study

DOI: 10.1007/s15010-008-8200-2

Cite this article as:
Wicker, S., Rabenau, H.F., Doerr, H.W. et al. Infection (2009) 37: 197. doi:10.1007/s15010-008-8200-2

Abstract

Background:

Since 1988, the Standing Committee on Vaccination (STIKO) at the Robert Koch-Institute, Berlin, has explicitly recommended that health-care workers (HCWs) should be vaccinated against seasonal influenza. However, acceptance of the influenza vaccination by medical personnel is low.

Methods:

This study analyzes factors associated with the compliance of HCWs with the seasonal influenza vaccination on the basis of three different anonymized questionnaires during two consecutive influenza seasons: 2006/2007 and 2007/2008. The questionnaires covered details of demographics, frequency of previous vaccinations, reasons for accepting or declining the vaccination, and the HCW’s knowledge of the influenza vaccine and influenza itself.

Results:

Our study showed that physicians were significantly more likely to have been vaccinated than nurses (38.8% vs 17.4%; p < 0.0001). The main reasons for noncompliance included: supposition of a low risk of infection, fear of side effects, the belief that the influenza vaccine might trigger the influenza virus infection, and scepticism about the effectiveness of the influenza vaccination.

Conclusion:

Our findings confirm the importance of a comprehensive approach to the vaccination, ensuring that HCWs are correctly informed about the vaccine and that it is convenient to receive it.

Copyright information

© Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Wicker
    • 1
    • 2
  • H. F. Rabenau
    • 2
  • H. W. Doerr
    • 2
  • R. Allwinn
    • 2
  1. 1.Occupational Health Service, University HospitalJohann Wolfgang Goethe University of FrankfurtFrankfurt/MainGermany
  2. 2.Institute of Medical Virology and Travel Vaccination Centre, University HospitalJohann Wolfgang Goethe University of FrankfurtFrankfurt/MainGermany