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September 22, 2020 04:00am
By Sallie Rafie, PharmD and Whitney Russell, PharmD student
New research illustrates the importance of providing education and training to pediatric and family medicine providers regarding human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines.
New research illustrates the importance of providing education and training to pediatric and family medicine providers regarding human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines, according to a Boston Medical Center press release. This coincides with health care systems changes, including starting an HPV vaccination series before the age of 11, which improves the overall rate of HPV vaccinations among adolescent patients.
The study results show improvements at each stage in the HPV vaccination series. These improvements were sustained beyond the conclusion of the intervention period, demonstrating that these types of programs could be used to help produce long-term increases in HPV vaccination rates, as mentioned in the journal Pediatrics.
DOSE HPV (Development of Systems and Education for HPV) is a multilevel inter-professional provider training program aimed at improving HPV vaccination rates, according to the press release. The program educates providers on how best to communicate with parents and caregivers about HPV vaccinations, as well as how to use data in their practices to address barriers to access and completion rates of the vaccine series for their patients.
Information from 16,136 individuals between the ages of 9 and 17 years from 5 pediatric primary care or family medicine practices was included in the research. Data about the pre- and post-intervention HPV vaccination series initiation and completion were analyzed for patients with at least 1 visit to a clinical site and 1 HPV vaccination dose or a completed HPV vaccine series.
The vaccine series initiation increased from 75% before the intervention to 90% after the intervention, and the entire series completion rate increased from 60% before the intervention to 69% after the intervention, according to the press release. Rates continued to rise for 6-18 months after the intervention was completed.
The 11 to 12 years of age group was analyzed separately with a vaccine initiation increase from 83% before the intervention up to 93% afterwards. Vaccine series completion rates increased from 54% pre-intervention to 69% post-intervention.
“Vaccination rates have significantly decreased due to COVID-19, and interventions to rapidly restore rates are needed to prevent epidemics of other vaccine-preventable diseases,” said lead researcher Rebecca Perkins, MD, MSc, in the press release. “The results of this study can help shed light on the importance of arming providers with the skills necessary to best communicate with families on the importance of getting vaccinations to help decrease the chances of other disease outbreaks in children and young adults.”
Further, the key program components included educating providers on how to better communicate with families, decreasing missed opportunities for vaccination, and beginning the HPV vaccine series prior to 11 years of age.
Multilevel interventions improve HPV vaccination rates of series initiation and completionation and completion. Boston Medical Center. https://www.bmc.org/news/press-releases/2020/06/15/multilevel-interventions-improve-hpv-vaccination-rates-series. Published June 15, 2020. Accessed June 18, 2020.