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Influenza vaccination coverage among adults by nativity, race/ethnicity, citizenship, and language of the interview - United States, 2012-2013 through 2017-2018 influenza seasons

Published:September 11, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2021.09.003

      Highlights

      • Foreign-born persons in the U.S. make up approximately 15% of the population.
      • People who are foreign-born experience health care disparities.
      • Foreign-born adults had lower flu vaccine uptake than US-born adults in most seasons.
      • People interviewed in non-English languages had lower vaccine uptake English-speakers.
      • Strategies to improve flu vaccination uptake must consider foreign-born adults.

      Abstract

      Background

      Approximately 20,000 people died from influenza in the US in the 2019-2020 season. The best way to prevent influenza is to receive the influenza vaccine. Persons who are foreign-born experience disparities in access to, and utilization of, preventative healthcare, including vaccination.

      Methods

      National Health Interview Survey data were analyzed to assess differences in influenza vaccination coverage during the 2012-2013 through 2017-2018 influenza seasons among adults by nativity, citizenship status of foreign-born persons, race/ethnicity, and language of the interview.

      Results

      Influenza vaccination coverage increased significantly during the study period for US-born adults but did not change significantly among foreign-born racial/ethnic groups except for increases among foreign-born Hispanic adults. Coverage for foreign-born adults, those who completed an interview in a non-English language, and non-US citizens, had lower vaccination coverage during most influenza seasons studied, compared with US-born, English-interviewed, and US-citizen adults, respectively.

      Conclusions

      Strategies to improve influenza vaccination uptake must consider foreign-born adults as an underserved population in need of focused, culturally-tailored outreach. Achieving high influenza vaccination coverage among the foreign-born population will help reduce illness among the essential workforce, achieve national vaccination goals, and reduce racial and ethnic disparities in vaccination coverage in the US.

      Key Words

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