Influenza vaccination among registered nurses: Information receipt, knowledge, and decision-making at an institution with a multifaceted educational program

Cori L. Ofstead, Sharon J. Tucker, Timothy J. Beebe, Gregory A. Poland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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OBJECTIVE. To evaluate the receipt of information and knowledge about influenza and vaccination, as well as influenza vaccination status and reasons for declining vaccination, among registered nurses. DESIGN. Cross-sectional survey of registered nurses (RNs). SETTING. A large tertiary medical center with a long-standing, multifaceted influenza vaccination program and relatively high vaccination rates among employees overall (76.5%). PARTICIPANTS. Randomly selected group of 990 RNs employed as inpatient staff nurses at the institution. RESULTS. The survey was completed by 513 (51.8%) of 990 RNs. Most RNs (86.7%) had received an influenza vaccination in the past, and 331 (64.5%) intended to receive vaccination during the 2005-2006 influenza season. More than 90% of RNs acknowledged exposure to educational bulletins, and most had received information about influenza severity (383 [74.7%]), transmission (398 [77.6%]), vaccine safety (416 [81.1%]), and the time and location of free vaccination (460 [89.7%]). A majority (436 [85.0%]) felt they had received all the information they needed to make good decisions about vaccination. However, only 49 RNs (9.6%) gave correct answers to more than 85% of the knowledge questions on the survey. The reasons most frequently reported for declining vaccination were doubts about the risk of influenza and the need for vaccination, concerns about vaccine effectiveness and side effects, and dislike of injections. CONCLUSIONS. RNs exposed to a longstanding, multifaceted educational program had received information about influenza vaccination, but misconceptions were common and only 331 (64.5%) intended to receive vaccination. Strategies other than educational interventions are needed to increase influenza vaccination rates and thereby to ensure healthcare worker and patient safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-106
Number of pages8
JournalInfection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2008


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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