Identifying attitudes, beliefs and reported practices of nurses and doctors as immunization providers

J Adv Nurs. 2010 Jul;66(7):1602-11. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2648.2010.05326.x. Epub 2010 May 21.


Aim: This paper is a report of a study conducted to examine the attitudes, beliefs, behavioural intentions and self-reported behaviour of nurses and physicians relating to key immunization behaviours and compare the findings for nurses and physicians.

Background: Immunization is an important and effective public health intervention. Understanding immunization providers' attitudes and beliefs toward immunization has the potential to improve educational efforts and lead to behavioural change.

Method: A postal survey was conducted with all immunization providers in British Columbia, Canada, in 2005. The survey elicited data on demographics, practice characteristics, attitudes, perceived social norms and perceived behavioural control related to key immunization behaviours.

Results: Responses were received from 344 nurses and 349 physicians. The response rate was 67% for nurses and 22% for physicians. More nurses than physicians thought that administering all recommended vaccines at one visit was important (89.2% vs. 63.2%P < 0.001); nurses felt more pressure from parents to administer all recommended vaccines (82.4% vs. 48.7%P < 0.001), and nurses were also more likely to intend to give all recommended vaccines at one visit (98.8% vs. 73.8%P < 0.001). Both nurses and physicians thought that their own receipt of influenza vaccine each year was important (88.9%, 87.1% respectively P = 0.65).

Conclusion: The foundational work done to develop the survey tool can be used to modify it so that survey findings can be validated according to the Theory of Planned Behaviour. The results could inform the development of behavioural change interventions targeting the identified determinants of immunization provider behaviour.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • British Columbia
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Immunization / psychology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nurses / psychology*
  • Physicians / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vaccines / administration & dosage
  • Young Adult


  • Vaccines