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Health Indicator Report of Immunization - Influenza, Adults

Influenza, or flu, is an acute viral infection involving the respiratory tract that can occur in epidemics or pandemics. Influenza can cause a person, especially older persons, to be more susceptible to bacterial pneumonia.

Influenza Vaccination in the Past 12 Months, Utah and U.S. Adults Aged 65+, 1995-2014


In 2011, the BRFSS changed its methodology from a landline only sample and weighting based on post-stratification to a landline/cell phone sample and raking as the weighting methodology. The 2011-2014 data on this graph are based on the new methodology (landline/cell phone sample; raking). Due to changes in both sampling and the question format, data for 2011-2014 should be interpreted with caution compared to previous years. U.S. data are the average for all states and the District of Columbia; they do not include the U.S. territories. These rates are crude rates, not age-adjusted, given that the Healthy People 2020 Objective is based on crude rates.

Data Sources

  • Utah Data: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Office of Public Health Assessment, Utah Department of Health
  • U.S. Data: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), Division of Behavioral Surveillance, CDC Office of Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services

Data Interpretation Issues

Adult data for Utah and U.S. is also available from the FluVaxView Influenza Vaccination Coverage web page, which is estimated annually by CDC utilizing data from several nationally representative surveys. These surveys include the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), the National Immunization Survey (NIS), and in 2009-10, the National 2009 H1N1 Flu Survey (NHFS). For the 2010-11 influenza season, additional assessment systems were developed to provide timely coverage estimates for selected populations. These include: rapid household telephone surveys and cell phones conducted nationally and in 20 selected local areas, internet panel surveys of pregnant women and health care workers, and use of third-party medical claims data. Beginning in 2011, BRFSS data include both landline and cell phone respondent data along with a new weighting methodology called iterative proportional fitting, or raking. This methodology utilizes additional demographic information (such as education, race, and marital status) in the weighting procedure. Both of these methodology changes were implemented to account for an increased number of U.S. households without landline phones and an under-representation of certain demographic groups that were not well-represented in the sample. More details about these changes can be found at: []. The survey question for this measure changed in 2011 to "During the past 12 months, have you had either a seasonal flu shot or a flu vaccine that was sprayed into your nose?". In previous years the question was "A flu shot is an influenza vaccine injected in your arm. During the past 12 months, have you had a seasonal flu shot?".


Number of adults who reported receiving an influenza vaccination in the past 12 months.


Number of survey respondents who reported receiving an influenza vaccination in the past 12 months.


Number of survey respondents.

Healthy People Objective IID-12.7:

Increase the percentage of children and adults who are vaccinated annually against seasonal influenza: Noninstitutionalized adults aged 65 years and older
U.S. Target: 90 percent
State Target: 90 percent

Other Objectives

Utah's 42 Community Health Indicators CSTE Chronic Disease Indicators

How Are We Doing?

The percentage of Utahns aged 65+ who received a flu vaccine is measured by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey, and was found to be 57.9% in 2014 as compared to 57.4% in 2013. While we saw an apparent decrease in coverage rates from 2007-2010 using the old BRFSS methodology, it will be interesting to see if the decreasing trend continues once we have additional longitudinal data using the new methodology and question wording that was implemented in 2011.

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

In Utah, 57.9% of adults aged 65+ surveyed on the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) in 2014 reported receiving a flu shot in the previous 12 months. Nationwide for the same age group, the rate was 59.9%. On average, more than 200,000 people in the United States are hospitalized each year for illnesses associated with seasonal influenza virus infections. The annual direct medical costs (hospitalization, doctors office visits, medications, etc.) for influenza in adults are estimated at $8.7 billion including $4.5 billion for adult hospitalizations resulting from influenza-attributable illness. Influenza is also responsible for substantial indirect costs ($6.2 billion annually), mainly from lost productivity.^1-2^ __References__ #Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). ''Seasonal Influenza-Associated Hospitalizations in the United States''. Retrieved from: [] #Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). ''Workplace Health Promotion - Adult Immunization''. Retrieved from: []

What Is Being Done?

The UDOH Immunization Program and Office of Epidemiology educate health care providers, clinic staff, and the public about prevention methods and support investigation of outbreaks. ====Who Should Get Influenza Vaccine?==== All people six months of age and older should receive influenza vaccine yearly in the fall or winter. Those that should strongly consider the vaccine are as follows: * People 50 years of age or older * Children age 6 months to 5 years * Residents of nursing homes and other chronic-care facilities * Adults and adolescents with chronic pulmonary or cardiovascular disorders, including asthma * Health care workers, care givers, and others who might transmit influenza virus to persons at high-risk for complications from infection * People who are less able to fight infections because of a disease they are born with, infection with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), treatment with medications such as long-term steroids, and/or treatment for cancer with X-rays or medications * Adults and adolescents who required regular medical follow-up or hospitalization during the preceding year because of chronic illnesses (including diabetes mellitus), kidney diseases, and blood cell diseases such as sickle cell anemia * Women who are pregnant during the flu season (December-March) * Persons 6 months to 18 years of age who receive long-term aspirin therapy and therefore might be at risk for developing Reye syndrome after influenza

Available Services

Available services for influenza include: * All influenza and pneumococcal vaccinations are covered for seniors with Medicare Part B. * Low-income and/or homeless adults can be immunized for a reduced fee based on income level at many Community Health Clinics. * Adults who are not U.S. citizens may also receive lower cost immunizations based on their income level at many Community Health Clinics. * Drive-by clinics are offered by many providers throughout the state for persons with limited physical mobility. * Immunizations can also be given to the home-bound through many private providers and county services. [[br]] Call the Immunization Hotline at 1-800-275-0659 for a list of Community Health Clinics, County Health Departments, Aging Services, and other providers who can assist you. Additionally, information about influenza and pneumococcal vaccinations can be found on the Utah Immunization Program website at: [].
Page Content Updated On 10/05/2015, Published on 10/14/2015
The information provided above is from the Department of Health's Center for Health Data IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Wed, 01 June 2016 1:24:34 from Department of Health, Center for Health Data, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Wed, 14 Oct 2015 14:38:42 MDT