Knowledge of Vaccination Needs of HIV-Infected Men Who Have Sex with Men in a National Sample of "Gay Friendly" Health care Providers

Public Health Nurs. 2016 Sep;33(5):403-11. doi: 10.1111/phn.12250. Epub 2016 Feb 5.


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to assess knowledge levels regarding vaccination needs of healthy, HIV-infected (with CD4 counts >200 cells/mm(3) ) men who have sex with men (MSM) in a national sample of "gay friendly" health providers.

Design and sample: Participants (n = 92) were sent a demographic questionnaire and case vignette asking for correct identification of vaccine needs of an HIV-infected MSM with a CD4 count >200 cells/mm(3) . Participants were recruited from the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association's Health Provider Index.

Measures: Descriptive statistics and Fisher's exact test were used to answer the research questions and define the sample.

Results: The vast majority of the sample (n = 83; 90%) misidentified correct vaccine needs of and/or selected inappropriate vaccines for the HIV-infected MSM. Greater familiarity with the CDC Adult Vaccination Schedule (p = .027), practice specialization (p = .004), and administration of vaccinations within location of practice (p = .009) were associated with greater knowledge of the patient's vaccine needs.

Conclusions: Health care providers who prescribe vaccines to HIV-infected MSM need more education regarding their vaccine needs. Nurses can reduce disparities in HIV-infected MSM by advocating for vaccination and augmenting providers' comprehension of vaccine needs of this population.

Keywords: AIDS; HIV; bisexual; gay; homosexual; immunization; nurse practitioner; physician; physician assistant; vaccination; vaccine.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Clinical Competence*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / epidemiology*
  • Health Personnel* / psychology
  • Health Personnel* / statistics & numerical data
  • Health Services Needs and Demand*
  • Homosexuality, Male / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Assessment
  • United States
  • Vaccination*