Seasonal influenza vaccination rates and reasons for non-vaccination in children with gastrointestinal disorders

Noam Peleg, Noam Zevit, Raanan Shamir, Gabriel Chodick, Itzhak Levy*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Despite advances in the treatment and prevention of influenza, it is still considered an important cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Annual vaccination is the safest and most effective mean of prevention. Our study aims were to explore the uptake of influenza vaccination among children with gastrointestinal disorders, and to characterize non-adherent patients. Methods: The present cross-sectional study included parents of pediatric patients attending the Gastroenterology Institute at Schneider Children's Medical Center of Israel between September and October 2011. Parents were asked to complete a questionnaire concerning demographic and clinical parameters, influenza vaccination of the child, and reasons for not vaccinating the child, when appropriate. Results: The study population included 273 patients (50% female), with a median age of 10 years (range, 2-18 years). Overall, the rate of seasonal influenza vaccination was 30.8%. Higher rates were found among immunosuppressed patients (46.1%), and in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (50%). There was no significant effect of patient age, gender, ethnic origin or parental level of education on the vaccination rate. Vaccination rates were significantly associated with parents' information and knowledge of, as well as their personal beliefs regarding the vaccine (. P<. 0.001). Conclusions: Influenza vaccination rates are relatively low in the pediatric population attending gastroenterology clinics, in both high- and low-risk groups. The importance of parental knowledge in compliance with influenza vaccination of children should prompt general pediatricians and gastroenterologists to discuss and address the common misconceptions regarding the vaccine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)182-186
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Gastroenterology
  • Immunization
  • Influenza
  • Vaccine


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