Study Objective: To examine how adolescent-parent dyads describe decision-making regarding initiation of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine series, specifically who they viewed as making the final decision. Design: Semistructured interviews with adolescent-parent dyads were audio-recorded and transcribed. Responses to the question: “How did you make a decision about whether or not to receive the HPV vaccine series?” were content-coded for each individual member of the dyad. Setting: Adolescent medicine clinics of 2 large urban medical centers and through snowball sampling. Participants: Adolescents 14-17 years of age and a parent (N = 262). Qualitative analyses were conducted for those who agreed that they were offered and started the HPV vaccine series (n = 109). Interventions: None. Main Outcome Measures: Descriptions of the decision-making included 1 person (adolescent or parent) making the decision or joint decision-making by the adolescent and parent together. Results: More than half of the dyads did not agree on who made the decision to start the vaccine. Most adolescents and parents described a similar account about when they were offered the HPV vaccine, although the interpretation of the event in terms of the decision-maker might have differed. More than half of adolescents and parents individually mentioned the health care provider in their description of the HPV vaccine decision-making process even though they were not queried about the role of the provider. Conclusion: Understanding the range of descriptions of these dyads is helpful to guide interventions to promote vaccine uptake in a manner that balances provider expertise, adolescent autonomy, and parental involvement.
- HPV vaccination
- Parent-adolescent communication
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Obstetrics and Gynecology