Employing Strategies to Overcoming Vaccination Challenges


A clinician offers ideas about who to target for immunization and strategic considerations when having these conversations.

In the midst of misinformation and people missing immunizations, clinicians are tasked with getting patients back up-to-speed on vaccinations.

Vidya Sundareshan, MD, chief of Infectious Diseases, Southern Illinois Univerity (SIU) and governor south of ACP, says a Kaiser study stated about a third of people are on the fence in terms of getting their vaccinations, and she says clinicians should focus their energies on these patients.

“We can use all the time that’s possible when the patient is in our offices,” explains. “When you focus your attention as a provider on this middle 30%, giving them the correct information, or dispelling any myths or concerns they may have is very helpful.”

In these conversations with patients, it is important for clinicians to offer empathy and refrain from judgement, explains Sundareshan.

Sundareshan presented a scientific session, Practical Approaches to Increasing Immunization Rates at the ACP conference that wrapped up in San Diego on Saturday.

She also says it is quite valuable to stay up-to-date on vaccine information and notes the CDC and IDSA as good reference points to utilize.

Contagion spoke to Sundareshan who offered insights on her session, how to approach patients about the vaccine conversation, and where we are today in terms of clinical care and COVID-19.

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