Monday, December 14, 2009

Seasonal influenza vaccination rates similar to last year

From Infectious Disease News. It may be that media-induced fears and intellectual arguments have 'maxed out' the number of Americans choosing to be vaccinated. Perhaps the only way to increase vaccine 'demand' in future will be through mandatory vaccinations. School mandates make vaccines a requirement for children, but so far there are no adult mandates, unless you work for the military or a health care facility that began mandating vaccines this year.

It will be interesting to see how those with vested interests in vaccination try to push vaccine mandates in future, now that swine flu is petering out.
The rate of seasonal influenza vaccination among American adults this year is only slightly higher than last year, according to results of a nationwide survey. These results were somewhat surprising to many infectious disease experts because earlier data indicated that seasonal influenza vaccination rates would be significantly higher this year because of increased public awareness.

...“It does not appear that the increased public discussion of the role of influenza vaccines has had a significant impact on the public’s behavior,” said Katherine Harris, senior economist at RAND, a nonprofit research organization, and one of the researchers who conducted the survey. “Most of the results from our latest survey look much like those from last year.” ...overall vaccine uptake through mid-November this year was comparable to uptake during the same period last year. In addition, about half of health care workers had been vaccinated by the middle of November this year; this rate is similar to the rate from last year.

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