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Flu Vaccination Rates Still Low for Nursing Home Workers, Pregnant Women — Physician’s First Watch
Flu Vaccination Rates Still Low for Nursing Home Workers, Pregnant Women
By Kelly Young
Rates of influenza immunization rose among healthcare personnel during the 2012–2013 flu season, but rates still lag among people working in long-term care facilities, according to MMWR.
Overall, 72% of healthcare personnel received flu vaccinations last season — an increase from 67% in the prior season. People working in long-term care facilities had the lowest rate, at 59%. The writers say that vaccination rates could be boosted by providing healthcare workers with a clear sense of the benefits and risks for them and their patients and by offering free vaccination in the workplace.
In a separate survey, just over half of pregnant women said they received a flu vaccination before or during their pregnancy last season. Rates were highest among women who said their healthcare providers recommended and offered vaccination. Pregnant women should be reminded that flu vaccination could protect their infants through age 6 months.