Factors that influence influenza vaccination rates among the elderly: nurses’ perspectives

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Abstract

Aims: To explore which factors nurses perceive to help and hinder influenza vaccination rates among the elderly. Background: Influenza-related illnesses and deaths have disproportionately high prevalence among the elderly. Vaccination is an effective tool to prevent complications. Methods: Semistructured interviews were conducted with nurses focusing on barriers, facilitators and health care providers’ roles in influencing patients to be vaccinated. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and thematically analysed. Results: Nurses identified that the prevalent barriers were fear of the vaccine's side effects, feelings of good health and technical considerations. Facilitators included ease of access and encouragement from health providers, media and social networks. The health care team was influential in raising vaccination rates through direct recommendation, providing concrete information or leading by example. Conclusions: The health care team can influence patients to vaccinate. Investments in training nurses in the knowledge and skills needed to educate patients, and providing nurses with the necessary resources to engage patients in these discussions may be beneficial. Nurse managers can be instrumental in enhancing nurses’ roles and actions to increase influenza vaccination rates among the elderly. Implications for Nursing Management: It is essential to reinforce the nurses’ role in promoting vaccination among seniors. Given that nurses are the largest number of health professionals, their potential outreach to large numbers of people is strong.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)158-166
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Nursing Management
Volume26
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • elderly
  • influenza vaccination
  • nurse management

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