Improving counselling skills to increase the compliance to anti-rotavirus vaccination

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: In Italy Rotavirus vaccination (RVV) coverage is low and it’s not usually recommended. We evaluated if a one-day residential course on counseling skills on RVV could affect the opinion about this vaccine of some Italian primary care paediatricians, physicians and nurses of vaccinations centres.

METHOD: twelve residential courses were carried out in different Italian towns. Participants were interviewed about their opinion and troubles with RVV. A seminar on RVV was offered together with an interactive session on counseling abilities and patient and family centred care (PFCC). A post-course survey was carried out.

RESULTS: 209 health professionals were enrolled with 125 primary care paediatricians (60%). 28%(65/209) of participants recommended RVV, 17%(35/209) recommended it seldom and 52%(109/209) didn’t at all. The main trouble with RVV was the costs, communication with families about the vaccine and some perplexities on the cost/effectiveness ratio of RVV. In the post-course survey, on a rating scale from 1 to 5 where 5 was the maximum, 57% answered “≥4” and 22% answered “=3” to the question “did you increase your preference for RVV?”; 80% answered “≥4” when asked “do you think that counselling and communication skills are useful for RVV?”, 82% answered “≥4” when asked if they were interested to other courses of vaccination counseling.

CONCLUSIONS: a brief residential course about counseling and PFCC for RVV increased the awareness about the importance of RVV. Paediatricians and vaccinating physicians perceive vaccine counseling as useful for RVV and their daily practice.

A cura di: Michele Arigliani, Giovanni V. Rosati, Gianpiero Chiamenti, Silvia Leone, Raffaele Arigliani