Immunization delivery in British Columbia: perspectives of primary care physicians.
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OBJECTIVE: To explore the experiences of family physicians and pediatricians delivering immunizations, including perceived barriers and supports. DESIGN: Qualitative study using focus groups. SETTING: Ten cities throughout British Columbia. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 46 family physicians or general practitioners, 10 pediatricians, and 2 residents. METHODS: A semistructured dialogue guide was used by a trained facilitator to explore participants' experiences and views related to immunization delivery in British Columbia. Verbatim transcriptions were independently coded by 2 researchers. Key themes were analyzed and identified in an iterative manner using interpretive description. MAIN FINDINGS: Physicians highly valued vaccine delivery. Factors facilitating physician-delivered immunizations included strong beliefs in the value of vaccines and having adequate information. Identified barriers included the large time commitment and insufficient communication about program changes, new vaccines, and the adult immunization program in general. Some physicians reported good relationships with local public health, while others reported the opposite experience, and this varied by geographic location. CONCLUSION: These findings suggest that physicians are supportive of delivering vaccines. However, there are opportunities to improve the sustainability of physician-delivered immunizations. While compensation schemes remain under the purview of the provincial governments, local public health authorities can address the information needs of physicians.
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