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Trends in seasonal influenza vaccine uptake during pregnancy in Western Australia: Implications for midwives

  • Annette K. Regan
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author at: School of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Western Australia, 227 Stubbs Terrace, Shenton Park, WA 6008, Australia. Tel.: +61 8 9388 4880; fax: +61 8 9388 4868.
    Affiliations
    School of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Western Australia, Crawley, Western Australia, Australia

    Communicable Disease Control Directorate, Western Australia Department of Health, Shenton Park, Western Australia, Australia
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  • Donna B. Mak
    Affiliations
    Communicable Disease Control Directorate, Western Australia Department of Health, Shenton Park, Western Australia, Australia
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  • Yvonne L. Hauck
    Affiliations
    School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine, Curtin University, Bentley, Western Australia, Australia

    Department of Nursing and Midwifery Education and Research, King Edward Memorial Hospital, Subiaco, Western Australia, Australia
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  • Robyn Gibbs
    Affiliations
    Communicable Disease Control Directorate, Western Australia Department of Health, Shenton Park, Western Australia, Australia
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  • Lauren Tracey
    Affiliations
    Communicable Disease Control Directorate, Western Australia Department of Health, Shenton Park, Western Australia, Australia
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  • Paul V. Effler
    Affiliations
    School of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Western Australia, Crawley, Western Australia, Australia

    Communicable Disease Control Directorate, Western Australia Department of Health, Shenton Park, Western Australia, Australia
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Published:February 12, 2016DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2016.01.009

      Abstract

      Background

      Antenatal influenza vaccination is an important public health intervention for preventing serious illness in mothers and newborns, yet uptake remains low.

      Aim

      To evaluate trends in seasonal influenza vaccine coverage and identify determinants for vaccination among pregnant women in Western Australia.

      Methods

      We conducted an annual telephone survey in a random sample of post-partum women who delivered a baby in Western Australia between 2012 and 2014. Women were asked whether influenza vaccination was recommended and/or received during their most recent pregnancy; women were also asked why or why they were not immunised.

      Findings

      Between 2012 and 2014, influenza vaccine coverage increased from 22.9% to 41.4%. Women who reported receiving the majority of their antenatal care from a private obstetrician were significantly more likely to have influenza vaccination recommended to them than those receiving the majority of their care from a public antenatal hospital or general practitioner (p < 0.001). In 2014, the most common reason women reported for accepting influenza vaccination was to protect the baby (92.8%) and the most common reason for being unimmunised was lack of a healthcare provider recommendation (48.5%).

      Discussion

      Antenatal influenza vaccination uptake is increasing, but coverage remains below 50%. A recommendation from the principal care provider is an important predictor of maternal influenza vaccination.

      Conclusion

      Antenatal care providers, including midwives, have a key role in providing appropriate information and evidence-based recommendations to pregnant women to ensure they are making informed decisions. Consistent recommendations from antenatal care providers are critical to improving influenza vaccine coverage in pregnant women.

      Keywords

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