Influence of sources of information about influenza vaccine on parental attitudes and adolescent vaccine receipt

Lisa M. Gargano, Natasha L. Underwood, Jessica M. Sales, Katherine Seib, Christopher Morfaw, Dennis Murray, Ralph J. DiClemente, James M. Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In 2011–2012, only 34% of 13–17 years olds in the United States (US) received seasonal influenza vaccine. Little is known about the link between parents' sources of health information, their vaccine-related attitudes, and vaccination of their adolescent against influenza. This study seeks to determine the relationship between number of sources of information on influenza vaccine, parental attitudes toward influenza vaccine, and influenza vaccine uptake in adolescents. We conducted a telephone and web-based survey among US parents of students enrolled in 6 middle and 5 high schools in Georgia. Bivariate and multivariable analyses were conducted to examine associations between the number of information sources about influenza vaccine and vaccine receipt and whether parent vaccine-related attitudes act as a mediator. The most commonly reported sources of information were: a physician/medical professional (95.0%), a family member or friend (80.6%), and television (77.2%). Parents who had higher attitude scores toward influenza vaccine were 5 times as likely to report their adolescent had ever received influenza vaccine compared to parents who had lower attitude scores (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 5.1; 95% confidence intervals (CI) 3.1–8.4; P < 0.01). Parent vaccine-related attitudes were a significant mediator of the relationship between sources of information and vaccine receipt. In light of the low response rate and participation in an adolescent vaccination intervention, findings may not be generalizable to other populations. This study shows the importance of multiple sources of information in influencing parental decision-making about influenza vaccine for adolescents. Harnessing the power of mass media and family members and friends as health advocates for influenza vaccination can potentially help increase vaccination coverage of adolescents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1641-1647
Number of pages7
JournalHuman Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Adolescents
  • Attitudes
  • Influenza
  • Media
  • Mediation
  • Vaccine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology


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