Monica Navaro, Francesco D’Aloisio, Giulia Dallagiacoma, Sandro Provenzano, Omar Enzo Santangelo, Vincenza Gianfredi and “Vaccine and vaccine hesitancy” working group of the Committee of Medical Residents of the Italian Society of Hygiene and Preventive Medicine
Vaccination coverage rates in healthcare workers in Italy are among the lowest in Europe, and only 10-15% of hospital staff members are immunized against seasonal influenza. The goal of this study was to analyze the attitude and awareness factors of influenza vaccination compliance among Italian future healthcare professionals. A multi-center cross-sectional study was performed using an online, self-reported and anonymous questionnaire, given to students attending different Healthcare degree programs in 14 Italian Universities. A total of 3,123 questionnaires were collected. More than 90% of students >23 years old were not vaccinated against seasonal influenza during the past years. Students vaccinated over the previous seasons, those that were usually recommended influenza vaccination based on their clinical evaluation or in accordance with the ministerial guidelines, and those that were recommended vaccination by other healthcare workers in the past years, demonstrated a greater acceptance of influenza vaccination. Campaigns promoting influenza vaccination among healthcare workers should consider students attending healthcare courses as a priority group, not only for their training activities in healthcare facilities, but also for their future and potential active role in the healthcare system.