Use of a pandemic preparedness drill to increase rates of influenza vaccination among healthcare workers

Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2008 Feb;29(2):111-5. doi: 10.1086/526434.


Objective: To determine the effect of a pandemic influenza preparedness drill on the rate of influenza vaccination among healthcare workers (HCWs).

Design: Before-after intervention trial.

Setting: The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics (UIHC), a large, academic medical center, during 2005.

Subjects: Staff members at UIHC.

Methods: UIHC conducted a pandemic influenza preparedness drill that included a goal of vaccinating a large number of HCWs in 6 days without disrupting patient care. Peer vaccination and mobile vaccination teams were used to vaccinate HCWs, educational tools were distributed to encourage HCWs to be vaccinated, and resources were allocated on the basis of daily vaccination reports. Logit models were used to compare vaccination rates achieved during the 2005 vaccination drill with the vaccination rates achieved during the 2003 vaccination campaign.

Results: UIHC vaccinated 54% of HCWs (2,934 of 5,467) who provided direct patient care in 6 days. In 2 additional weeks, this rate increased to 66% (3,625 of 5,467). Overall, 66% of resident physicians (311 of 470) and 63% of nursing staff (1,429 of 2,255) were vaccinated. Vaccination rates in 2005 were significantly higher than the hospitalwide rate of 41% (5,741 of 14,086) in 2003.

Conclusions: UIHC dramatically increased the influenza vaccination rate among HCWs by conducting a pandemic influenza preparedness drill. Additionally, the drill allowed us to conduct a bioemergency drill in a realistic scenario, use innovative methods for vaccine delivery, and secure administrative support for future influenza vaccination campaigns. Our study demonstrates how a drill can be used to improve vaccination rates significantly.

MeSH terms

  • Administrative Personnel / psychology
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Disease Outbreaks / prevention & control
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Health Personnel / organization & administration*
  • Health Personnel / psychology*
  • Hospitals, University
  • Humans
  • Immunization Programs
  • Infectious Disease Transmission, Professional-to-Patient
  • Influenza Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Influenza, Human / immunology
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control
  • Personnel, Hospital / psychology
  • Personnel, Hospital / statistics & numerical data*
  • Vaccination / statistics & numerical data*


  • Influenza Vaccines