Nurses do a better job at making sure patients are vaccinated over, and specifically for flu and pneumococcus, a Canadian meta-analysis found.
Researchers conducted a meta-analysis of more than 100 randomized and nonrandomized studies involving more than 470,000 patients in North America and the UK, looking at studies that included a quality improvement intervention for improving adult influenza and pneumococcal vaccination rates in community dwelling adults.
Interventions were associated with improvements in the rates of any vaccination (111 comparisons in 77 studies, pooled odds ratio [OR]=1.61; 95% CI, 1.49 to 1.75). Interventions were also associated with improved vaccinations for flu (93 comparisons, 65 studies, OR=1.46; 95% CI, 1.35 to 1.57) and pneumococcus (58 comparisons, 35 studies, OR=2.01; 95% CI, 1.72 to 2.3) vaccinations.
The most effective flu vaccination interventions were community media campaigns and telephone reminders delivered by clinic staff. For pneumococcal vaccinations, office brochures handed to patients by clinic staff before their appointments was most effective. Brochures at the point of care were 3.87 times more effective than mailed reminders.
Having nurses assume responsibility for administering vaccinations worked, while having nurses and pharmacists remind physicians didn't, the researchers wrote.
"Configuring additional personnel so that they are able relieve physicians of vaccinations seems important to successful team change," they wrote.