Study objectives: People with asthma are at high risk for complications from influenza; therefore, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends an annual influenza vaccination for people with asthma. Because little is known about such vaccination rates among adults, especially those aged 18 to 49 years and 50 to 64 years, we sought to estimate influenza vaccination rates among US adults.
Design: Cross-sectional analyses of the 1999 to 2001 National Health Interview Surveys.
Setting: US population.
Participants: Representative samples of US adults aged ≥ 18 years.
Measurements and results: Asthma status and receipt of influenza vaccination during the past 12 months were self-reported. We found that 35.1% (95% confidence interval [CI], 33.0 to 37.0%), 36.7% (95% CI, 34.7 to 38.6%), and 33.3% (95% CI, 31.6 to 35.0%) of participants with asthma reported having had an influenza vaccination in 1999 (n = 2,620), 2000 (n = 3,007), and 2001 (n = 3,582), respectively. Among participants aged 18 to 49 years, the vaccination rates were 20.9% (SE 1.2%), 22.7% (SE 1.2%), and 21.1% (SE 1.0%), respectively. Among participants aged 50 to 64 years, the vaccination rates were 46.2% (SE 2.6%), 47.8% (SE 2.3%), and 42.3% (SE 2.1%), respectively. Vaccination rates increased strongly with age and with education in each year. Associations with sex or with race or ethnicity were inconsistent during the 3 years.
Conclusions: The suboptimal vaccination rates among people with asthma aged 18 to 64 years suggest the need to increase influenza vaccination rates in this age group.