Understanding the motivation behind their decisions can help you formulate a plan.
World Health Organization estimates that vaccination saves 3.5-5 million lives worldwide every year.20 Despite the availability, many still delay or refuse recommended vaccines, which can lead to outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases and avoidable deaths.21
This choice is often attributed to a lack of confidence in vaccine efficacy and safety; however, studies show there are three main motivating factors that may influence vaccine hesitancy22:
- Ease of physical access, affordability, and availability
- Understanding of vaccination services
- Effectiveness and safety of vaccinations
- Vaccination delivery systems
- Motivations of decision-makers
- Low perceived risk of vaccine-preventable diseases
- Underappreciation and deprioritization of vaccination
Talk with your patients to determine the exact cause for their hesitancy and address accordingly.
SDOH influence parental decisions about vaccination
In data from the 2018-2019 NIS-Child Survey, 23.6% (n=1804) of parents with children aged 19-35 months reported hesitancy toward childhood vaccinations.25,a
Parental vaccine hesitancy differed by race/ethnicity, mother’s education level, and poverty status.25,a
Percent of parents reporting hesitancy (95% CI)
Mother’s education level
Among the hesitant parents, vaccine hesitancy contributed to 15-25% of undervaccination among children aged 19-35 months25,a
aNIS-Child is an annual, random digit-dialed telephone survey conducted by the CDC among parents or guardians of children aged 19–35 months. The association of parental vaccine hesitancy with vaccination coverage was assessed using a CDC-developed 6-item questionnaire where parents were asked questions on their perceptions of childhood vaccination.25
Be prepared for honest conversation
Explore scientifically proven techniques for overcoming vaccine hesitancy and communicating effectively with parents.