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The impact of a vaccine mandate and the COVID-19 pandemic on influenza vaccination uptake in Western Australian health care students

Willis, G.A., Bloomfield, L., Berry, M., Bulsara, C., Bulsara, M., Chaney, G., Cooke, H., Maticevic, J., Russell, K., Zic, M. and Mak, D.B. (2022) The impact of a vaccine mandate and the COVID-19 pandemic on influenza vaccination uptake in Western Australian health care students. Vaccine, 40 (39). pp. 5651-5656.

Link to Published Version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vaccine.2022.08.040
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Abstract

Annual influenza vaccination of health care students and workers helps protect themselves and patients from influenza, which has a high disease burden during seasonal peaks in Australia. Health care students are an important cohort whose early attitudes and habits towards influenza vaccination may influence future behaviours. We explored the knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours towards influenza vaccination of health care students in two universities from 2018 to 2020 using convergent mixed methodology. We also assessed the impact of two external events – the introduction of mandatory influenza vaccination for select students in 2019, and the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. We found a significant increase in self-reported vaccination uptake between 2018 (73.5%) and 2020 (89.6%), with the mandate and COVID-19 pandemic being likely drivers of increased uptake. Vaccine mandates are effective but must be supported by easy accessibility, adequately addressing concerns around effectiveness and safety, and promotion of voluntary acceptance and trust.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): College of Arts, Business, Law and Social Sciences
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright: © 2022 Elsevier Ltd.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/65960
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