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Gastroenterology ; 162(7):S-600, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1967347


Introduction Despite the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccine hesitancy remains common in the general public. Adults who were on immunosuppressive medications were among the earlier groups recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. It is unclear whether similar vaccine hesitancy is seen in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), especially those who are on immunosuppressive medications. We sought to examine rate of vaccine hesitancy in patients with IBD as well as associated demographic and socioeconomic risk factors. Methods We performed a retrospective chart review in November 2021 of 1383 patients with IBD seen at University of Maryland Medical Center, a tertiary referral medical center, between November 2020 and October 2021. Data obtained from patients' charts included demographics;disease characteristics including disease phenotype, number of years since diagnosis, number of IBD-related surgeries;and IBD therapy including biologics, thiopurines or methotrexate, corticosteroids, and mesalamine. Information on COVID vaccination and routinely recommended vaccines were also collected which included annual influenza vaccine, Prevnar/ Pneumovax, and Shingrix. Those with no recorded COVID-19 vaccine were contacted by nurses for updated vaccine status. Results 72% (990/1383) of patients in this cohort were on a biologic, 17% (232/1383) were on corticosteroids, and 16% (224/1383) were on thiopurine or methotrexate, indicating a cohort of patients with moderate to severe disease phenotype. Fifty-seven percent (792/1383) of patients received either the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccine. In a multivariate regression analysis, COVID vaccination was found to be positively associated with a number of factors including older age (p-value= 4.92e-4), female sex (p=1.61e-3), Asian and Caucasian races (p=9.13e-3, 6.47e-06), number of years since diagnosis (p=2.73e-2), number of clinic visits in the past 12 months (p= 2.66e-10), and biologic use (p=4.41e-4). This remained the case while controlling for IBD disease type;marital status;insurance (Commercial vs Medicaid vs Medicare);and tobacco, alcohol, and substance use history. Patients who received other routinely recommended vaccines (influenza, Prevnar/Pneumovax, Shingrix) were not more likely to receive COVID- 19 vaccine. Discussion Although majority of patients in this cohort were on an immunosuppressive medication, COVID-19 vaccination rate is only recorded to be at 57%. Number of clinic visits, presumably more education and conversation with healthcare providers, had a positive impact on COVID-19 vaccination. In this cohort, younger adults, males, and African Americans were less likely to receive COVID-19 vaccine. Healthcare providers need to recognize these potential risk factors for COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy.