Identifying barriers to adult pneumococcal vaccination: An NFID task force meeting

Susan J. Rehm, Thomas M. File, Mark Metersky, Kristin L. Nichol, William Schaffner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Pneumococcal infection is common in adults, and invasive disease is associated with a high mortality rate. Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine can prevent invasive pneumococcal disease and is recommended for people aged $ 65 years and for younger adults with high-risk chronic conditions; however, vaccination rates are suboptimal in all of these groups. A multidisciplinary task force meeting examined ways to increase vaccination rates in the target populations. Barriers to vaccination include lack of awareness of the disease or vaccine among vaccination candidates and health care providers, failure to assume responsibility for vaccination, competing priorities, incomplete or inaccessible documentation of previous vaccines, and health care system delivery challenges. Efforts to address these barriers should use appropriate methods. For example, potential vaccine recipients might be motivated by a message from a community leader, whereas health care providers are more apt to offer a vaccine when reminded that it is a recommended best practice. All health care providers need to accept responsibility for vaccination so that this preventive measure becomes a high priority in the care of patients at risk for serious pneumococcal infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-79
Number of pages9
JournalPostgraduate medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2012


  • Adult vaccination
  • Pneumococcal disease
  • Pneumococcal vaccine
  • Pneumonia
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae


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