Vaccine Refusal Rates Are on the Rise
Helpful Guidance for Clinicians from the Quality and Safety Team
Recent studies along with our own internal Cook Children’s data shows that influenza vaccine refusal rates are rising.
Last week 44% of our inpatients declined the flu vaccine prior to their discharge. This refusal rate is higher than the 41% in the same week of flu season last year and the 31% in the same week of 2021. This is a concerning trend given the importance of vaccination in preventing and controlling influenza for our patients, families, and staff.
As clinicians, it's important to use effective communication strategies to encourage patients to get vaccinated. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends using the SHARE model to give a strong vaccine recommendation.
By using the SHARE model, clinicians can provide important information to help patients make informed decisions about vaccinations and increase vaccination rates. For more helpful information, videos and tools like the SHARE model, please see the Flu Vaccines for Inpatients CookNet site.
Here are the steps of the SHARE model:
Share the reasons why an influenza vaccine is right for the patient given his or her age, health status, lifestyle, occupation, or other risk factors.
Highlight positive experiences with influenza vaccination, including personal and professional experiences.
Address patient questions and concerns about influenza vaccination.
Remind patients that influenza vaccines help protect them and their loved ones from serious influenza illness and complications that can result in hospitalization or even death for some people.
Explain the potential costs of getting influenza, including potential serious health effects for the patient, time lost (such as missing work or family obligations), financial costs, and potentially spreading influenza to more vulnerable family or friends.