Volume 31, Issue 42, Pages 4689-4932 (1 October 2013)
Human papillomavirus vaccine communication: Perspectives of 11–12 year-old girls, mothers, and clinicians
Original Research Article
Tanya L. Kowalczyk Mullins, Anne M. Griffioen, Susan Glynn, Gregory D. Zimet, Susan L. Rosenthal, J. Dennis Fortenberry, Jessica A. Kahn
Because little is known about the content of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine-related discussions with young adolescent girls in clinical settings, we explored communication between 11- and 12 year-old girls, mothers, and clinicians regarding HPV vaccines and concordance in reports of maternal and clinician communication.
We conducted individual interviews with 33 girls who had received the quadrivalent HPV vaccine in urban and suburban clinical settings, their mothers, and their clinicians. Data were analyzed using qualitative methods.
From the perspectives of both girls and mothers, clinicians and parents were the preferred sources of HPV vaccine information for girls. Vaccine efficacy and risks/benefits of vaccination were the most commonly reported desired and actual topics of discussion by mothers, girls, and clinicians. Clinician recommendation of vaccination was reported by nearly one-fifth of girls and nearly half of mothers. The most common concordant messages were related to efficacy of the vaccine, with concordance in 70% of triads. The most common discordant messages were related to sexual health. Approximately half of clinicians (16) reported discussing sexual health, but only 5 mothers (15%) and 4 girls (12%) reported this. Triads recruited from suburban (vs. urban) practices had higher degrees of concordance in reported vaccination communication.
HPV vaccine efficacy and safety are important topics for clinicians to discuss with both girls and mothers; educating mothers is important because parents are a preferred source of vaccine-related information for girls. Because girls may be missing important vaccine-related messages, they should be encouraged to actively engage in vaccine discussions.