Some children need
two doses of influenza vaccine in a season, yet less than half of these
children receive both doses. A study in the January 2015 issue of Pediatrics,
“Text Message Reminders for Second Dose of Influenza Vaccine: A RandomizedControlled Trial,” published online Dec. 29, reported on 660 Latino children
between the ages of 6 months through 8 years from three community clinics in
New York City who were receiving their first influenza vaccination that season
and needed a second dose. Each child was randomly assigned to receive either
conventional text messages including vaccination due date and clinic hours;
educational text messages, which also added influenza vaccine health literacy
promoting information; or a written reminder only. Parents who received the
educational texts were more likely (72.7 percent) to come back for the needed
second dose, versus 66.7 percent who received conventional texts, or 57.1
percent who had only a written reminder at time of vaccination. They also had
more timely vaccination. Study authors conclude that text messages that let
parents know when to come back to get the second dose and remind them why it is
important are a quick and easy way to help families get the protection they
need for their children.
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The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of
62,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and
pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being
of infants, children, adolescents and young adults (www.aap.org).
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