Influenza immunization among elderly people with disabilities is a critical public health concern; however, few studies have examined the factors associated with vaccination rates in non-Western societies.
By linking the National Disability Registration System and health service claims dataset from the National Health Insurance program, this population-based study investigated the seasonal influenza vaccination rate among elderly people with disabilities in Taiwan (N = 283,172) in 2008. A multivariate logistic regression analysis was conducted to adjust for covariates.
Nationally, only 32.7% of Taiwanese elderly people with disabilities received influenza vaccination. The strongest predictor for getting vaccinated among older Taiwanese people with disabilities was their experience of receiving an influenza vaccination in the previous year (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 6.80, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 6.67–6.93). Frequent OPD use (AOR = 1.85, 95% CI: 1.81–1.89) and undergoing health examinations in the previous year (AOR = 1.66, 95% CI: 1.62–1.69) also showed a moderate and significant association with receiving an influenza vaccination.
Although free influenza vaccination has been provided in Taiwan since 2001, influenza immunization rates among elderly people with disabilities remain low. Policy initiatives are required to address the identified factors for improving influenza immunization rates among elderly people with disabilities.