Presented in part at the meeting of the International Society of Travel Medicine, Paris, France, April 1993.
Assessment of an Adult Population's Knowledge Regarding Vaccine-Preventable Diseases
Article first published online: 28 JUL 2006
Journal of Travel Medicine
Volume 3, Issue 2, pages 103–106, June 1996
How to Cite
Falvo, C., Win, P. T. and Horowitz, H. W. (1996), Assessment of an Adult Population's Knowledge Regarding Vaccine-Preventable Diseases. Journal of Travel Medicine, 3: 103–106. doi: 10.1111/j.1708-8305.1996.tb00714.x
- Issue published online: 28 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 28 JUL 2006
Background: The purpose of this study was to determine adult patients' knowledge about their history of age-appropriate routine vaccinations and vaccine preventable diseases.
Methods: This was a prospective descriptive study using a self-administered questionnaire. During a 9-month period, all patients older than 18 years of age answered a questionnaire at the time of their first visit to a health department travelers' clinic. Questions included knowledge of vaccines that they might have received (against tetanus, diphtheria, polio, measles, rubella, influenza, and pneumococcus); knowledge of illnesses that they might have had (measles and rubella); incidence of visits to a regular physician; and incidence of chronic illness.
Results: Two hundred and twenty patients answered the questionnaire. Eighty-two percent had a regular physician whom they had visited within 5 years. Respondents reported their age-appropriate vaccination history as follows: Td-69%; polio-48%; measles-41%; rubella-38%; influenza-68%; and pneumococcal-13%. For any vaccine, approximately one-third of respondents did not know their status. Age, gender, or a regular source of medical care did not influence the results.
Conclusions: Adult patients frequently did not receive, or do not know whether they received, recommended immunizations. Until physicians giving primary medical care improve patient education about vaccination status and develop a better system for having patients keep records of their routine vaccinations, travel clinics will have to function, in part, as primary health care providers.