Investigators from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determined that influenza vaccination levels among asthma sufferers falls well short of guidelines set by the CDC and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Healthy People 2010
, a comprehensive, nationwide health promotion and disease prevention agenda launched by the HHS is designed to improve the health of all people in the United States in the first 10 years of the 21st century. One of the 467 objectives of Healthy People 2010 calls for annual influenza vaccination of at least 60% of adults aged 18 to 64 years with asthma.

The recent study analyzed responses of 173,572 adults in this age range and found that 8.4% had asthma.

Among adults aged 18 to 49 years with asthma, influenza vaccination coverage was 33.9% compared to 54.7% of adults aged 50 to 64 years with asthma. Among participants 18 to 64 years of age without asthma, vaccination coverage was 28.8%.

According to an announcement on study results, a race/ethnicity gap of 8 to 10 percentage points was also identified between vaccination levels among non-Hispanic whites compared to levels among non-Hispanic blacks or Hispanics, despite adjustments for a set of socio-demographic and access-to-care variables.

The panel of investigators included influenza vaccination among the “Core set of 10 key clinical activities” to reduce asthma morbidity and mortality.

The results of their study are published in the August 2009 issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.