0
Letters |

On-Demand Delivery of Influenza Vaccination

John S. Brownstein, PhD; Jane E. Huston, MPH; Lauren Steingold, BA; and Meghan Verena Joyce, MBA
[+] Article, Author, and Disclosure Information

From Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, and Uber, San Francisco, California.

Disclosures: Disclosures can be viewed at www.acponline.org/authors/icmje/ConflictOfInterestForms.do?msNum=L15-0204.


Ann Intern Med. 2015;163(10):806-807. doi:10.7326/L15-5169
Text Size: A A A

Background: Engaging young, healthy persons in primary prevention can be difficult. For example, vaccination remains the single best option for preventing influenza; however, only approximately 30% of adults aged 18 to 49 years receive the vaccine (1). Many factors contribute to this problem, but geographic accessibility, availability at convenient times, and perceived ease of vaccination may increase coverage (24). Because of these circumstances, pharmacies are increasingly important sites for vaccine distribution (1); nevertheless, many persons remain unvaccinated. New options for making influenza vaccination available might reach some persons who would otherwise go unvaccinated.

Objective: To describe a vaccination effort that was designed to appeal to persons for whom convenience is especially important.

Methods: In 2014, HealthMap Vaccine Finder, an organization that connects the public to local vaccine providers through a searchable online map, and Uber, a mobile application that connects riders and drivers, created UberHEALTH, a 1-day opportunity on 23 October in Boston; New York City; and Washington, DC, and on 16 November in Chicago (5). Users could request delivery of influenza prevention packs to their home or office with the option for a nurse to administer 1 to 10 doses of influenza vaccine. Registered nurses were arranged through Passport Health, a company with clinics that provide travel medicine and immunization services in most urban locations in North America, and Pager, a company in New York City that provides medical services at the patient's site for common illnesses and minor injuries. The program was publicized using e-mail messages to application users; blog posts; and social media, such as Facebook and Twitter. Vaccine delivery and administration were free, and the application donated $5 for each request to the American Red Cross for childhood vaccinations. Interested persons in Chicago; Boston; and Washington, DC, were invited by e-mail to complete a 4-question online survey.

Findings: Vaccines were requested at 2378 sites, and nurses vaccinated 2057 persons. Of the 2024 persons who were sent surveys, 486 (24%) completed and returned them. Respondents indicated that they were definitely likely (30.2%), somewhat likely (50.0%), or definitely not likely (19.8%) to receive the vaccine from traditional providers and that the delivery of the vaccine was very important (78.2%), moderately important (15.6%), or not important (6.2%) to their decision to be vaccinated.

Discussion: We conceived of this effort as a proof of concept. We believe that the results show that such an effort is feasible because of the availability of new information technology and the new organizations that the technology makes possible. They also indicate that substantial numbers of persons who are willing to be vaccinated against influenza but are deterred by inconvenience will participate in a program that provides vaccination when and where they want it. Whether such efforts are practical depends on cost-effectiveness, scalability, and other considerations that we did not address. If these types of programs are shown to be practical, we imagine them being useful when near-complete immunization of the population is necessary to prevent circulation of an infectious agent, especially one with severe consequences.

References

Lu PJ, Santibanez TA, Williams WW, Zhang J, Ding H, Bryan L, et al, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Surveillance of influenza vaccination coverage—United States, 2007-08 through 2011-12 influenza seasons. MMWR Surveill Summ. 2013; 62:1-28.
PubMed
 
Papastergiou J, Folkins C, Li W, Zervas J. Community pharmacist-administered influenza immunization improves patient access to vaccination. Can Pharm J (Ott). 2014; 147:359-65.
PubMed
CrossRef
 
Uscher-Pines L, Harris KM, Burns RM, Mehrotra A. The growth of retail clinics in vaccination delivery in the U. . Am J Prev Med. 2012; 43:63-6.
PubMed
CrossRef
 
Goad JA, Taitel MS, Fensterheim LE, Cannon AE. Vaccinations administered during off-clinic hours at a national community pharmacy: implications for increasing patient access and convenience. Ann Fam Med. 2013; 11:429-36.
PubMed
CrossRef
 
Huston JE, Mekaru SR, Kluberg S, Brownstein JS. Searching the Web for influenza vaccines: HealthMap Vaccine Finder. Am J Public Health. 2015; 105:e134-9.
PubMed
CrossRef
 

Figures

Tables

References

Lu PJ, Santibanez TA, Williams WW, Zhang J, Ding H, Bryan L, et al, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Surveillance of influenza vaccination coverage—United States, 2007-08 through 2011-12 influenza seasons. MMWR Surveill Summ. 2013; 62:1-28.
PubMed
 
Papastergiou J, Folkins C, Li W, Zervas J. Community pharmacist-administered influenza immunization improves patient access to vaccination. Can Pharm J (Ott). 2014; 147:359-65.
PubMed
CrossRef
 
Uscher-Pines L, Harris KM, Burns RM, Mehrotra A. The growth of retail clinics in vaccination delivery in the U. . Am J Prev Med. 2012; 43:63-6.
PubMed
CrossRef
 
Goad JA, Taitel MS, Fensterheim LE, Cannon AE. Vaccinations administered during off-clinic hours at a national community pharmacy: implications for increasing patient access and convenience. Ann Fam Med. 2013; 11:429-36.
PubMed
CrossRef
 
Huston JE, Mekaru SR, Kluberg S, Brownstein JS. Searching the Web for influenza vaccines: HealthMap Vaccine Finder. Am J Public Health. 2015; 105:e134-9.
PubMed
CrossRef
 

Letters

NOTE:
Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Comments

Submit a Comment/Letter
Submit a Comment/Letter

Summary for Patients

Clinical Slide Sets

Terms of Use

The In the Clinic® slide sets are owned and copyrighted by the American College of Physicians (ACP). All text, graphics, trademarks, and other intellectual property incorporated into the slide sets remain the sole and exclusive property of the ACP. The slide sets may be used only by the person who downloads or purchases them and only for the purpose of presenting them during not-for-profit educational activities. Users may incorporate the entire slide set or selected individual slides into their own teaching presentations but may not alter the content of the slides in any way or remove the ACP copyright notice. Users may make print copies for use as hand-outs for the audience the user is personally addressing but may not otherwise reproduce or distribute the slides by any means or media, including but not limited to sending them as e-mail attachments, posting them on Internet or Intranet sites, publishing them in meeting proceedings, or making them available for sale or distribution in any unauthorized form, without the express written permission of the ACP. Unauthorized use of the In the Clinic slide sets will constitute copyright infringement.

Toolkit

Advertisement
Related Articles
Topic Collections
PubMed Articles
Forgot your password?
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a reminder to the email address on record.
(Required)
(Required)