Characteristics of U.S. older adult medicare beneficiaries receiving the influenza vaccination at retail pharmacies

Explor Res Clin Soc Pharm. 2023 Jan 5;9:100220. doi: 10.1016/j.rcsop.2023.100220. eCollection 2023 Mar.


Background: Pharmacy-provided influenza vaccination services have become more prevalent among the older adult population. However, little is known about the characteristics of older adults associated with receiving the influenza vaccination at retail pharmacies and how these associated characteristics have changed.

Objective: To examine characteristics of older adults associated with use of retail pharmacy-provided influenza vaccination services and how the characteristics changed between 2009 and 2015.

Methods: The study used a retrospective, cross-sectional design with data from the 2009 and 2015 Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey. Older adults aged 65 and older who completed a community questionnaire and received the influenza vaccination during the previous winter were identified. Andersen's Behavioral Model of Health Services Use was the conceptual framework for inclusion of the population characteristics. A multivariable log-binomial regression was performed to estimate the association between the population characteristics and use of pharmacy-provided vaccination service, and the relative change in associations between 2009 and 2015. Survey weights were applied in all analyses.

Results: The results showed older adults who were non-Hispanic black (compared to non-Hispanic white), who did not have secondary private insurance (compared to those who had), who did not have physician office visit (compared to those who had) and who lived in non-metro area (compared to those who lived in metro area) had become more likely to use pharmacy-provided influenza vaccination services in 2015 than in 2009.

Conclusions: Pharmacy-provided influenza vaccination services appear to reduce access barriers for racially and socioeconomically disadvantaged older adults. Findings could help inform not only the retail pharmacies that provide vaccination services to better outreach to potential target populations but also policy makers about the disadvantaged populations that would benefit from the vaccination services provided by retail pharmacies.

Keywords: Access to care; Health care disparity.; Influenza vaccination; Pharmacy; Pharmacy-provided vaccination services.