Understanding adult vaccination in urban, lower-socioeconomic settings: influence of physician and prevention systems.


PPV and influenza vaccination rates were determined for 2,021 patients aged 65 years and older receiving care from 30 physicians in 17 practices surveyed about their office systems for providing adult immunizations. Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) analyses were used to examine the relationships among vaccination rates, patient-level characteristics, and physician variables.

Overall, the weighted PPV vaccination rate was 60.0% and varied widely across physicians (range, 11%-98%). At the patient level in HLM, patient race (P=.01) and age (P = .02), but not neighborhood income, were associated with PPV status. By linking physician survey data with PPV rates, we found the best pair of physician variables to be "reported time spent with patients for a well visit" (P = .01) and "use of enhanced immunization documentation" (P=.10). The overall influenza vaccination rate was 51.9% (range, 22%-96%). Patient race (P=.003) and age (P = .002) were associated with influenza vaccination. The pair of physician variables with the strongest association with influenza vaccination was "use of standing orders" (P <.001) and "average observed physician examination room time," regardless of visit type (P=.02).

Vaccination rates for pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV) and influenza vaccine are relatively low in disadvantaged urban populations. This study was designed to assess which physician and practice characteristics might explain differences in rates across physicians.

Vaccination rates vary widely in urban settings and are associated with practice characteristics such as time spent with patients and, for influenza vaccine, use of standing orders.

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