Vaccinoscopie Europe Survey Evaluates Parental Views on Vaccination


A new survey found that parents in Spain were the most supportive of vaccinations when compared with their counterparts in 4 other European countries.

A new survey found that parents in Spain were the most supportive of vaccinations when compared with their counterparts in 4 other European countries.

The survey results are part of a study that was due to be presented at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases 2020 (ECCMID). The in-person meeting was cancelled this year due the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic; however, conference organizers have decided to publish the meeting abstracts.

The survey, Vaccinoscopie Europe, was a web-based survey that disseminated to 1500 parents from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom in 2019. Survey responses were collected from 300 parents of children aged 0 to 35 months in each country.

As vaccine hesitancy is a growing problem, a team of French investigators analysed the data to compare how parents in each country value vaccination. The team found that parents in Spain were the most pro-vaccination (94%) and parents in Frank were the least pro-vaccination (73%). In the middle were Germany (88%), Italy (87%), and the United Kingdom (86%).

According to the authors of the abstract, 1 in every 30 parents in the UK and Germany were opposed to all vaccinations compared with 1% in the other countries. Additionally, in all of the countries surveyed, more than 90% of parents had favourable opinions towards mandatory vaccinations “for at least certain vaccines,” which the authors note consist of vaccines for 1 of the following diseases: “: tetanus; whooping cough; measles; rubella; pneumococcal meningitis; meningococcal meningitis B; meningococcal meningitis C; Haemophilus influenzae type b; poliomyelitis; diphtheria; mumps; hepatitis B; rotavirus gastroenteritis; chicken pox.”

In Germany and the UK, the highest proportion of parents against compulsory vaccination were observed with 7.8% in Germany and 7.4% in the UK. Rates in other countries were 4% for France, 1% for Italy, and 0.8% for Spain.

The investigators also looked at the parent’s opinions on vaccine knowledge. They found that only 77% of French parents felt well informed, which 90-94% of parents in other countries felt well informed. French parents were also found to have read less online information about vaccines at 58% compared with 70% for Germany, 81% for the UK; 71% for Italy.

The authors wrote that trust in health authorities was the highest in Spain (88%) and the lowest in France (68%). The investigators found that most parents received information regarding vaccinations from a health care provider, but their second source of information varied from the internet, health authority websites, and friends and family.

“Parents having a favourable opinion on vaccination seemed to be linked with a better perceived vaccination knowledge. Local characteristics should be taken into account to increase confidence into vaccination. Evaluation should be harmonised at a European level, allowing countries to share best practice strategies for public health,” the authors concluded.

The abstract, European vaccination survey shows wide variety of parents’ opinions across UK, Italy, France, Spain and Germany, was due to be presented at ECCMID 2020.

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