Factors affecting nurses’ decision to get the flu vaccine
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The objective of this study was to identify factors that influence the decision whether or not to get the influenza (flu) vaccine among nurses in Israel by using the health belief model (HBM). A questionnaire distributed among 299 nurses in Israel in winter 2005/2006 included (1) socio-demographic information; (2) variables based on the HBM, including susceptibility, seriousness, benefits, barriers and cues to action; and (3) knowledge about influenza and the vaccine, and health motivation. A probit model was used to analyze the data. In Israel, the significant HBM categories affecting nurses’ decision to get a flu shot are the perceived benefits from vaccination and cues to action. In addition, nurses who are vaccinated have higher levels of (1) knowledge regarding the vaccine and influenza, (2) perceived seriousness of the illness, (3) perceived susceptibility, and (4) health motivation than do those who do not get the vaccine. Immunization of healthcare workers may reduce the risk of flu outbreaks in all types of healthcare facilities and reduce morbidity and mortality among high-risk patients. In order to increase vaccination rates among nurses, efforts should be made to educate them regarding the benefits of vaccination and the potential health consequences of influenza for their patients, and themselves.
JEL ClassificationI11 I10 I18 C13
KeywordsHealth belief model Influenza Nurses Questionnaire Vaccination
We would like to thank Tammar Baram for assistance in data collection, and we also thank Naomi Eldor and Elioz Hefer for their help. The financial support of the Max Stern Academic College of Emek Yezreel is gratefully acknowledged. We also thank the two anonymous referees for their helpful comments and suggestions, which improved the final version of the paper. An earlier version of this paper was presented at the 6th National Conference on Health Policy, The National Institute for Health Policy and Health Services Research, Tel-Aviv, 2007.
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