- Safety. Concern about the safety of influenza vaccine is one of the major barriers to immunization during pregnancy for many mothers (Yeager, 1999).
- Lack of information. Providers and patients do not have enough information about the safety and efficacy of influenza immunizations during pregnancy (Schrag, 2003).
Strategies to address these considerations:
- Encourage health care provider recommendations. Advice from a health care provider plays an important role in a woman's decision to be immunized during pregnancy (Silverman, 2001).
- Enhance health care provider education. Health care providers should be educated with information about the risks and benefits of influenza immunization during pregnancy so that they feel comfortable recommending the vaccine to pregnant women and to help them make informed decisions (Naleway, 2007).
- Increase awareness and knowledge. Information regarding immunization safety should be accompanied with a clear message of why immunization is important, particularly in pregnant women.
- Educate in alternative settings: Many pregnant women purchase prenatal vitamins at community pharmacies. These settings and other non-traditional settings may be an appropriate for counseling women on the importance of immunizations, so that when their children are born, parents feel more motivated to have them immunized.
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