ORIGINAL STUDIESAttitudes of pediatricians regarding influenza self-immunization: a survey in a Swiss university children’s hospitalHEININGER, ULRICH MD; BÄCHLER, MERCEDES MD; SCHAAD, URS B. MDAuthor Information From University Children’s Hospital, Basel, Switzerland. Accepted for publication Jan. 10, 2003. Address for reprints: Ulrich Heininger, M.D., Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, University Children’s Hospital Basel, P.O. Box CH-4005, Basel, Switzerland. Fax 41-61-685-6012; E-mail Ulrich.Heininger@unibas.ch. The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal: May 2003 - Volume 22 - Issue 5 - p 391-394 doi: 10.1097/01.inf.0000066901.59298.a8 Buy Metrics Abstract Objective. To assess the attitude toward influenza immunization of doctors among physicians in our hospital. Methods. A self-administered questionnaire survey was performed in a voluntary and anonymous manner in early 2002 after influenza immunization for employees with patient contact had been promoted in the fall of 2001. Physicians were asked whether they had been immunized or not and which of the following reason(s) for doing so applied to them: to protect themselves; to protect their patients; to set a positive example. Solicited reasons for decline: not convinced about necessity; not convinced about efficacy; concerns about side effects; negative attitude toward the immunization initiative; fear of injection. Results. Questionnaires were sent to 90 pediatricians and returned by 46 (98%) of 47 immunized and 25 (58%) of 43 unimmunized participants. Self-protection and protection of patients had been equally important reasons for acceptance (87% each); 46% wanted to set a positive example for their patients by being immunized themselves. Unimmunized physicians expressed doubts about necessity (56%), efficacy (32%) and concerns about side effects (24%). Of immunized physicians 98% considered reimmunization for the next season as did 60% of those currently unimmunized. Conclusions. Prevailing misconceptions indicate that increased educational efforts are necessary to improve acceptance of influenza vaccine in our institution. © 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.