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Clinicians’ and Pharmacists’ Reported Implementation of Vaccination Practices for Adults
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  • Pubmed ID:
    30054198
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC6166242
  • Description:
    Introduction

    Despite the proven effectiveness of immunization in preventing morbidity and mortality, adult vaccines remain underutilized. The objective of this study was to describe clinicians’ and pharmacists’ self-reported implementation of the Standards for Adult Immunization Practice (“the Standards”; i.e., routine assessment, recommendation, and administration/referral for needed vaccines, and documentation of administered vaccines, including in immunization information systems).

    Methods

    Two Internet panel surveys (one among clinicians and one among pharmacists) were conducted during February–March 2017 and asked respondents about their practice’s implementation of the Standards. T-tests assessed associations between clinician medical specialty, vaccine type, and each component of the Standards (March–August 2017).

    Results

    Implementation of the Standards varied substantially by vaccine and provider type. For example, >80.0% of providers, including obstetrician/gynecologists and subspecialists, assessed for and recommended influenza vaccine. However, 24.3% of obstetrician/gynecologists and 48.9% of subspecialists did not stock influenza vaccine for administration. Although zoster vaccine was recommended by >89.0% of primary care providers, <58.0% stocked the vaccine; by contrast, 91.6% of pharmacists stocked zoster vaccine. Vaccine needs assessments, recommendations, and stocking/referrals also varied by provider type for pneumococcal; tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis; tetanus diphtheria; human papillomavirus; and hepatitis B vaccines.

    Conclusions

    This report highlights gaps in access to vaccines recommended for adults across the spectrum of provider specialties. Greater implementation of the Standards by all providers could improve adult vaccination rates in the U.S. by reducing missed opportunities to recommend vaccinations and either vaccinate or refer patients to vaccine providers.

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