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School-based influenza vaccine delivery, vaccination rates, and healthcare use in the context of a universal influenza immunization program: an ecological study

Kwong JC, Ge H, Rosella LC, Guan J, Maaten S, Moran K, Johansen H, Guttmann A. Vaccine. 2010; 28(15):2722-9. Epub 2010 Jan 26.

Influenza vaccines are universally funded in Ontario, Canada. Some public health units (PHUs) vaccinate children in schools. We examined the impact of school-based delivery on vaccination rates and healthcare use of the entire population over seven influenza seasons (2000-2007) using population-based survey and health administrative data. School-based vaccination was associated with higher vaccination rates in school-age children only. Doctors' office visits were lower for PHUs with school-based vaccination for children aged 12-19 but not for other age groups. Emergency department use and hospitalizations were similar between the two groups. In the context of universal influenza vaccination, school-based delivery is associated with higher vaccination rates and modest reductions in healthcare use in school-age children.

Keywords: Immunization Vaccination Health care utilization