Attitudes to HPV vaccination among parents of children aged 12-15 years—A population-based survey in Sweden

Authors

  • Lisen A. Dahlström,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
    • Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
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  • Trung N. Tran,

    1. Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
    2. Epidemiology Department, Merck Research Laboratories, Merck & Co., Inc., North Wales, Pennsylvania
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  • Cecilia Lundholm,

    1. Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
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  • Cecilia Young,

    1. Sanofi Pasteur MSD, Solna, Sweden
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    • Cecilia Young is currently employed at Sanofi Pasteur MSD, Trung Tran is currently employed at Merck and Co Inc

  • Karin Sundström,

    1. Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
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  • Pär Sparén

    1. Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
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    • Pär Sparén received funding for data collection for the present study from Sanofi Pasteur MSD, Sweden. He is also a member of a steering group at GlaxoSmithKline for a phase IV trial of HPV vaccines.


Abstract

In this population-based survey undertaken in Sweden in 2007, we investigated correlates of attitudes to human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination among parents of children aged 12–15 years. We invited 16,000 parents of girls and 4,000 parents of boys, randomly selected from the Swedish population. Response rates were 70 and 69%, respectively. Multinomial logistic regression models were applied to investigate correlates of acceptability to HPV vaccination. Among studied parents, 76% were willing to vaccinate their child if the vaccine is for free and 63% were willing to vaccinate even if the vaccine comes with a cost. Having heard of HPV was associated with both willingness to vaccinate if the vaccine is free (odds ratio [OR]: 1.42; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.21–1.66) and willingness to vaccinate even if the vaccine is not free (OR: 1.96; 95% CI: 1.75–2.20) compared with those who never heard of HPV. Beliefs about vaccine safety and efficacy were also strong correlates of willingness to vaccinate. Parents born outside Europe and those with higher education were less willing to vaccinate if the vaccine is not free. In conclusion, the willingness to vaccinate was reasonably high and cost did not appear to be a major barrier. Information about vaccine safety and efficacy is important and parents need information about HPV and the HPV vaccine.

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