Human papillomavirus vaccination recommendation may be linked to reimbursement: a survey of Virginia family practitioners and gynecologists

J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2011 Dec;24(6):380-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2011.06.016. Epub 2011 Sep 9.


Objective: Concerns have been raised about gynecologists as vaccinators. This survey evaluated use of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, attitudes, and barriers among gynecologists and family practitioners for differences between the 2 specialties.

Design: A cross-sectional survey was conducted using a 50-item, self-administered questionnaire mailed to participants.

Setting: The study was conducted in Virginia through the University of Virginia Center for Survey Research.

Participants: The questionnaire was mailed to 500 family practitioners and 500 gynecologists.

Interventions: The questionnaire asked provider and practice demographics, vaccine practices, knowledge, HPV vaccine attitudes, and barriers to vaccination.

Main outcome measures: We compared gynecologists to family practitioners for the outcome of offering HPV vaccination. Logistic regression was performed to determine factors associated with providers choosing to offer and recommend the HPV vaccine.

Results: After exclusion of ineligible physicians, 385 of 790 doctors responded (48.7%). Seventy percent of family practitioners and 73.5% of gynecologists currently offer the HPV vaccine. There were no significant differences in demographics or practice patterns between the specialties. The most frequent barrier to vaccination reported by both groups was reimbursement. In multivariate logistic regression, inadequate reimbursement was negatively associated with offering the HPV vaccine (odds ratio [OR] 0.41; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.15-1.1) and with recommending the vaccine to patients (OR 0.45; 95% CI 0.26-0.76). Experience treating HPV- related disease was positively associated with offering the HPV vaccine (OR 2.3; 95% CI 1.1-4.8).

Conclusions: Gynecologists are providing HPV vaccination at rates similar to family practitioners. Reimbursement concerns may negatively have an impact on doctors' recommendation of the HPV vaccine.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Directive Counseling*
  • Family Practice / statistics & numerical data*
  • Gynecology / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Insurance, Health, Reimbursement / economics*
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Papillomavirus Infections / drug therapy
  • Papillomavirus Infections / prevention & control
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines / economics*
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines / therapeutic use
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vaccination / economics*
  • Virginia


  • Papillomavirus Vaccines