Tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis vaccine (Tdap) is recommended for all adults in Canada but uptake is low. This study measured the knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors of Canadian adults to identify potential barriers and facilitators to Tdap uptake. A survey was undertaken on a geographically representative sample of Canadian adults (n=4023) and 8 focus groups (62 participants) were conducted nationwide. The survey revealed that knowledge about pertussis and Tdap was low (38.3% correct answers). Only 36.0% of respondents reported being aware that all adults were recommended to receive Tdap and only 10.7% reported being immunized; 36.7% did not know whether or not they had received Tdap. Respondents who were aware of the immunization recommendations were twice as likely to be immunized (16.6% vs. 8.3%; p<0.001). Only 9.3% believed that their health care provider thought that Tdap was important for adults. The focus group data supported the survey results. Participants wanted information about pertussis and Tdap communicated through a multiple modalities but a recommendation by their family physician was most important to their decision whether or not to be immunized. This study demonstrates that current recommendations for universal adult vaccination with Tdap are not reaching the general public in Canada and an alternative strategy will be required to improve Tdap vaccine uptake
Authors:Halperin BA1, MacDougall D2, MacKinnon-Cameron D3, Li L3, McNeil SA4, Langley JM5, Halperin SA6.