From non school-based, co-payment to school-based, free Human Papillomavirus vaccination in Flanders (Belgium) : a retrospective cohort study describing vaccination coverage, age-specific coverage and socio-economic inequalities
Faculty of Social Sciences. Sociology
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Vaccine / International Society for Vaccines. - Amsterdam
, p. 5188-5195
University of Antwerp
School-based, free HPV vaccination for girls in the first year of secondary school was introduced in Flanders (Belgium) in 2010. Before that, non school-based, co-payment vaccination for girls aged 12-18 was in place. We compared vaccination coverage, age-specific coverage and socio-economic inequalities in coverage -3 important parameters contributing to the effectiveness of the vaccination programs - under both vaccination systems. We used retrospective administrative data from different sources. Our sample consisted of all female members of the National Alliance of Christian Mutualities born in 1995, 1996, 1998 or 1999 (N=66,664). For each vaccination system we described the cumulative proportion HPV vaccination initiation and completion overtime. We used life table analysis to calculate age-specific rates of HPV vaccination initiation and completion. Analyses were done separately for higher income and low income groups. Under non school-based, co-payment vaccination the proportions HPV vaccination initiation and completion slowly rose over time. By age 17, the proportion HPV vaccination initiation/completion was 0.75 (95% CI 0.74-076)/0.66 (95% CI 0.65-0.67). The median age at vaccination initiation/completion was 14.4 years (95% CI 14.4-14.5)/15.4 years (95% CI 15.3-15.4). Socio-economic inequalities in coverage widened over time and with age. Under school-based, free vaccination rates of HPV vaccination initiation were substantially higher. By age 14,the proportion HPV vaccination initiation/completion was 0.90 (95% CI 0.90-0.90)/0.87(95% CI 0.87-0.88). The median age at vaccination initiation/completion was 12.7 years (95% CI 12.7-12.7)/13.3 years (95% CI 13.3-13.3). Socio-economic inequalities in coverage and in age-specific coverage were substantially smaller. (C) 2015 Published by Elsevier Ltd.