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December 1996

Influenza Immunization Rates Among Pediatric Health Care Providers

Author Affiliations

Department of Pediatrics William Beaumont Army Medical Center El Paso, TX 79920
El Paso

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150(12):1311-1313. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1996.02170370089018

Influenza virus infection produces an acute febrile infection of the respiratory tract that is characterized by an abrupt onset, headache, malaise, and a dry nonproductive cough.1,2 While it has been 3 decades since the last influenza pandemic, influenza continues to cause significant morbidity and even mortality in both normal and high-risk children.2-6 Influenza attack rates in previously healthy children have been estimated at 10% to 48% each year, with approximately 1% of these infections resulting in hospitalization.5 Excess rates of hospitalization and pulmonary complications have been documented for children with influenza who have sickle-cell disease, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, severe asthma, cystic fibrosis, malignancies, diabetes, and chronic renal disease.5-8 To reduce the likelihood of influenza infection and concomitant morbidity, the Immunization Practices Advisory Committee has recommended yearly influenza immunization for high-risk pediatric patients since the early 1980s.9 With the realization that health care providers serve as an