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Attitudes towards influenza and uptake of the flu vaccine: A survey of pharmacy staff working in English hospitals

journal contribution
posted on 30.04.2021, 09:25 by Ryan A Hamilton, Eva Krockow, Priya Vekria
Objectives
Pharmacy staff working in hospitals are at risk of contracting and disseminating influenza. Previous research focuses on community pharmacists’ attitudes towards influenza and vaccination. This survey investigates the beliefs and attitudes of pharmacists and other pharmacy staff working in English Hospitals regarding influenza and the vaccine and how this relates to vaccine uptake.

Methods
A self-administered survey was provided to pharmacy staff at three hospitals in the East Midlands of England. Job role, age and vaccination status (vaccinated, intended to be vaccinated, and not vaccinated) were collected alongside ratings of agreement with 20 statements regarding influenza and vaccination using a Likert scale.

Results
170 pharmacy staff responded; 50.6% had been vaccinated, 17.1% intended to be vaccinated and 32.4% were not vaccinated. Increasing age showed a significant (p = 0.017) positive correlation with increased vaccine uptake as did the beliefs that vaccination protects the individual from influenza (p = 0.049) and that vaccination should be mandatory for NHS staff (p = 0.006). Fear of needles and believing their immune system is strong enough to protect against influenza were negatively correlated with vaccine uptake (p = 0.016 and p = 0.010, respectively). Job role was also strongly correlated with vaccine uptake (p = 0.001), with those holding a pharmacy degree more likely to report being vaccinated or intending to be vaccinated compared to all other pharmacy staff groups.

Conclusions
This is the first survey to focus on vaccine behaviours of all pharmacy staff groups working in hospitals. Current uptake of the influenza vaccine may be increased through engagement of senior pharmacy colleagues and providing education on influenza, vaccines, and vaccination. Similar studies should be undertaken on a larger scale to fully interrogate the differences between pharmacy staff groups.

History

Citation

Vaccine, Volume 39, Issue 19, 6 May 2021, Pages 2636-2642

Author affiliation

Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour, College of Life Sciences

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Published in

Vaccine

Volume

39

Issue

19

Publisher

Elsevier

issn

0264-410X

Acceptance date

29/03/2021

Copyright date

2021

Available date

09/04/2022

Language

en