Respiratory infection that affects between 19-26 million people in the United States.
Influenza is a highly contagious, respiratory infection that affects between 19-26 million people in the United States annually and is associated with morbidity and mortality. Influenza spreads easily with rapid transmission especially in crowded areas. The Centers for Disease Control recommends the best prevention against influenza is the influenza vaccination. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends annual influenza vaccination for all individuals greater than six months who do not have contraindications. Strong evidence supports the safety and efficacy of the influenza vaccine, yet the uptake of the vaccine is low across many populations, especially college students. Healthy People 2020 influenza vaccination initiative goal is 70% vaccination rate. The American College Health Association influenza vaccination goal is 44%. In order to address the low influenza vaccination rate among intercollegiate athletes a multi-component evidence based practice improvement project was implemented at a private university in rural Ohio. As a result of the implementation of the flu vaccine initiative vaccination rate among intercollegiate athletes increased from 13.4% in 2018 -2019 to 25.6% in 2019-2020.