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Improving immunization uptake rates among Gypsies, Roma and Travellers: a qualitative study of the views of service providers
Journal of Public Health, Volume: 43, Issue: 4
Swansea University Author: Louise Condon
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BackgroundGypsies, Roma and Travellers are at risk of low uptake of routine immunizations. Interventions to improve uptake in these communities are seldom evaluated. As part of a qualitative study exploring barriers and facilitators to immunization uptake in Travellers, we report service provider (S...
|Published in:||Journal of Public Health|
Oxford University Press (OUP)
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BackgroundGypsies, Roma and Travellers are at risk of low uptake of routine immunizations. Interventions to improve uptake in these communities are seldom evaluated. As part of a qualitative study exploring barriers and facilitators to immunization uptake in Travellers, we report service provider (SP) perspectives.MethodsWe interviewed immunization SPs working with six Traveller communities across four UK cities. Participants included frontline staff and those with strategic or commissioning roles. Semi-structured interviews explored perceived attitudes of Travellers to vaccinations, local service delivery, and opportunities and challenges to improving uptake. Audio-recordings were transcribed, analyzed thematically and mapped to a socio-ecological model of health.Results39 SPs participated. Four overarching themes were identified: building trusting relationships between SPs and Travellers; facilitating attendance at appointments; improving record keeping and monitoring and responding to local and national policy change. Travellers were perceived as largely supportive of immunizations, though system and organizational processes were recognized barriers to accessing services.ConclusionsFindings were broadly consistent across Traveller groups and settings. The barriers identified could often be addressed within existing infrastructure, though require system or policy change. Development of a culturally competent system appears important to enable equity in access to immunizations for Travellers.
cultural identity, ethnicity, immunization
College of Human and Health Sciences