Medical students' attitude towards influenza vaccination

B.A. Lehmann*, R.A.C. Ruiter, S. Wicker, G. Chapman, G. Kok

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Background: Influenza vaccination is recommended for all healthcare personnel (HCP) and most institutions offer vaccination for free and on site. However, medical students do not always have such easy access, and the predictors that might guide the motivation of medical students to get vaccinated are largely unknown. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey study among pre-clinical medical students in a German University hospital to assess the social cognitive predictors of influenza vaccination, as well as reasons for refusal and acceptance of the vaccine. Results: Findings show that pre-clinical medical students have comparable knowledge gaps and negative attitudes towards influenza vaccination that have previously been reported among HCP. Lower injunctive norms and higher feelings of autonomy contribute to no intention to get vaccinated against influenza, while a positive instrumental attitude and higher feelings of autonomy contribute to a high intention to get vaccinated. The variables in the regression model explained 20% of the variance in intention to get vaccinated. Conclusions: The identified factors should be addressed early in medical education, and hospitals might benefit from a more inclusive vaccination program and accessibility of free vaccines for their medical students.
Original languageEnglish
Article number185
Number of pages7
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2015


  • Medical students
  • Hospital
  • Influenza vaccination
  • Social-cognitive predictors

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