vaccine, immunization, school employees, influenza, MMR, policy
Background: There continues to be a need for increases in adult vaccination rates, especially among those working in environments which may easily become communicable disease outbreak centers, such as school employees in the school environment. The purpose of this study was to evaluate why rural Utah school employees were non-compliant with the influenza and measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccines, as well as to identify their views on mandatory vaccination policies.
Methods: A questionnaire was distributed to all school employees in a rural Utah school district. Data analysis included frequencies and measures of central tendency and dispersion for quantitative items and theme identification for qualitative items.
Results: Only 51% of school employees were adequately vaccinated for influenza. Reasons for noncompliance with the influenza vaccine included inconvenience, lack of perceived need, and questionable vaccine efficacy. There were 39.3% school employees who had not received an MMR during adulthood, which was commonly attributed to lack of knowledge regarding the need for this vaccine. Almost half (45.7%) of school employees believed a mandatory vaccination policy should be instituted, although 24.2% of school employees were opposed to mandatory adult vaccination policies. Reasons for opposing vaccination mandates included violation of personal choice, lack of perceived vaccination safety and efficacy, lack of perceived need for adult vaccines, and vaccine cost.
Conclusions: Suboptimal vaccination rates of school employees may negatively affect the health and well-being of individuals in the school environment. School employees report a variety of beliefs regarding the influenza and MMR vaccines. While over half of school employees support mandatory vaccination policies for adults working in the school environment, those opposing such a policy report concerns regarding violation of personal choice. Public health officials and school administrators should coordinate efforts to increase vaccination rates among adults in the school environment.
Original Publication Citation
Macintosh, J. L. B., Luthy, K. E., Beckstrand, R. L., Eden, L. M., & Orton, J.* (2014). Vaccination perceptions of school employees in a rural school district. Vaccine, 32(37), 4766-4771.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Macintosh, Janelle; Luthy, Karlen E. (Beth); Beckstrand, Renea L.; Eden, Lacey M.; and Orton, Jennifer, "Vaccination perceptions of school employees in a rural school district" (2014). Faculty Publications. 5246.
© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Copyright Use Information