Prenatal Care Providers and Influenza Prevention and Treatment: Lessons from the Field
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To better understand the knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors of providers regarding influenza infection and vaccination in pregnancy, fourteen focus groups were conducted among 92 providers in Atlanta, GA; Dallas, TX; and Portland, OR in late 2009. NVivo 8.0 was used for analysis. Most providers had no experience with pregnant women severely affected by influenza. Many perceived the 2009 H1N1 pandemic to be limited and mild. Providers knew that pregnant women should receive the 2009 H1N1 vaccine and reported plans to vaccinate more patients than the previous season. Most knew CDC guidelines for antiviral treatment and prophylaxis, but some reported hesitancy with presumptive treatment. Although awareness of influenza’s potential to cause severe illness in pregnant women was observed, providers’ experience and comfort with influenza prevention and treatment was suboptimal. Sustained efforts to educate prenatal care providers about influenza in pregnancy through trusted channels are critical.
KeywordsAntiviral medications H1N1 virus Influenza vaccine Pandemic Pregnancy Prenatal care providers
The authors would like to thank Kitty MacFarlane, CDC, for her contributions toward funding and planning the project; Kelly Brumbaugh, CDC, for her contributions in planning, implementation, and analysis of the project; and Colleen Carr and Laurie Brockman of Danya International for the focus group logistics. We also wish to thank Molly Lynch of RTI International for her involvement in planning and analyzing the project and Joey Horne of RTI International for her analytic support.
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