Self-care practices and the need for influenza vaccination in healthy individuals

Authors

  • Candice Bodkin RN BSc BN MSc(Nsg),

    Corresponding author
    1. Lecturer, Women's Health and Alternative Therapies, Department of Nursing Education, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Parktown, Gauteng, South Africa
      Candice Bodkin, Department of Nursing Education, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Witwatersrand, 7 York Road, Parktown 2193, Gauteng, South Africa. Email: harrisc@therapy.wits.ac.za
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  • Hester C Klopper RN BACur MCur PhD MBA

    1. Professor and Head of Department, Department of Nursing Education, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Witwatersrand, Parktown, Gauteng, South Africa
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Candice Bodkin, Department of Nursing Education, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Witwatersrand, 7 York Road, Parktown 2193, Gauteng, South Africa. Email: harrisc@therapy.wits.ac.za

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to determine whether self-care practices in healthy individuals reduce the need for trivalent influenza vaccination and whether naturopathic influenza prevention reduces rate, duration and severity of influenza, absenteeism from work due to influenza and side-effects, as compared to trivalent influenza vaccination. A survey design was followed using exploratory, descriptive and comparative methods. The method of study was an open-label, two-group, parallel study. The data collection tool was a self-administered questionnaire. A two-group sample was obtained through non-probability, purposeful sampling. Data was analysed by means of descriptive and inferential statistics at the 0.05 level of significance. Results indicated that there was no significant difference between the rates of influenza infection of the naturopathic group as compared with the trivalent vaccination group but there was a marginal reduction in the duration of febrile illness in the former group. The naturopathic group were less likely to visit a medical practitioner in order to resolve the influenza, however, they were as likely as the trivalent vaccinated group to commence a new treatment plan. Neither method of influenza prevention resulted in a significant reduction in absenteeism from work. The trivalent vaccinated group had significantly more side-effects than the naturopathic group.

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