Disparities in vaccination rates in solid organ transplant patients

Jamie R. Felzer, Lila J. Finney Rutten, Chung Il Wi, Allison M. LeMahieu, Elena Beam, Young J. Juhn, Robert M. Jacobson, Cassie C. Kennedy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Vaccinations against preventable respiratory infections such as Streptococcus pneumoniae and influenza are important in immunosuppressed solid organ transplant (SOT) recipients. Little is known about the role of age, race, ethnicity, sex, and sociodemographic factors including rurality, or socioeconomic status (SES) associated with vaccine uptake in this population. Methods: We conducted a population-based study using the Rochester Epidemiology Project, a medical records linkage system, to assess socioeconomic and demographic factors associated with influenza and pneumococcal vaccination rates among adult recipients of solid organ transplantation (aged 19–64 years) living in four counties in southeastern Minnesota. Vaccination data were obtained from the Minnesota Immunization Information Connection from June 1, 2010 to June 30, 2020. Vaccination rate was assessed with Poisson and logistic regression models. Results: A total of 468 SOT recipients were identified with an overall vaccination rate of 57%–63% for influenza and 56% for pneumococcal vaccines. As expected, vaccination for pneumococcal vaccine positively correlated with influenza vaccination. Rural patients had decreased vaccination in both compared to urban patients, even after adjusting for age, sex, race, ethnicity, and SES. Although the population was mostly White and non-Hispanic, neither vaccination differed by race or ethnicity, but influenza vaccination did by SES. Among organ transplant groups, liver and lung recipients were least vaccinated for influenza, and heart recipients were least up-to-date on pneumococcal vaccines. Conclusions: Rates of vaccination were below national goals. Rurality was associated with undervaccination. Further investigation is needed to understand and address barriers to vaccination among transplant recipients. (Figure presented.).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere14010
JournalTransplant Infectious Disease
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2023


  • flu
  • geographic disparities
  • organ transplant
  • pneumococcal
  • vaccines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation
  • Infectious Diseases


Dive into the research topics of 'Disparities in vaccination rates in solid organ transplant patients'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this