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Cogent Medicine ; 8, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1617071


Background: There is little data available on vaccine hesitancy rates in Irish parents, particularly in relation to the influenza vaccine (InV). Evidence to date would suggest that the morbidity from COVID-19 is lower in paediatric populations than that from influenza. Vaccination strategies are likely to be required for both infections, and as such, understanding parental perception of both vaccines is essential. Aims: We hoped to identify vaccination hesitancy rates for routine childhood vaccines (RCV) and for the influenza vaccine (InV). We then sought to identify intended uptake rates of the InV and any potential paediatric COVID-19 vaccine and review this data to try to identify trends in vaccination perceptions. Methods: A 10 item anonymised questionnaire was distributed to parents of all patients admitted under the General Paediatric team in a large tertiary centre in Dublin for 4 weeks during November 2020. Results were compiled and analysed, with scoring averages used to determine perceived vaccine efficacy scores (PVES) from a minimum of 1 to a maximum of 5 amongst the population and its subgroups. Results: A total of 214 questionnaires were analysed. The average age was 59.45 months, with the median being 34 months. Of those due to have commenced their RCV schedule, 92.98% were up to date, with 2.7% having received no vaccinations. The average PVES for RCV and the InV was 4.67 and 4.31, respectively. Of those eligible to receive the InV this year (n=143), 37.8% were either very likely or likely to receive the vaccine, with 47.6% unsure, unlikely, or very unlikely. PVES decreased steadily with increasing hesitancy, to a nadir of 4.13 for RCH and 3 for the InV in the very unlikely subgroup. The average likelihood to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, if one were available, was 3.67. Only 23.83% were likely or very likely to vaccinate against influenza and COVID-19 simultaneously. With regards to preferable vaccination, 22.9% would prefer COVID-19 vaccination, 20.56% would prefer Influenza vaccination, 41.59% had equal preference, and 13.55% wanted neither. Discussion: Our study showed high PVES for both RCV and InV as well as high vaccination rates, but comparatively low intended rates of uptake of the Influenza vaccine and a potential COVID-19 vaccination. More research as to the reasoning behind this is needed in order to plan potential vaccination strategies.