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Results of an Academic Dialysis Program-Wide SARS-CoV-2 Vaccination Effort

By Brendan T. Bowman, Benjamin J. Lobo, Jennie Z. Ma, Binu Sharma

Posted 10 May 2021
medRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2021.05.07.21256841

Patients with End Stage Kidney Disease requiring dialysis are exceedingly vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2 infection with high hospitalization rates and mortality. Despite this risk, little is known about real world dialysis patient SARS-CoV-2 vaccination acceptance. Surveys of the general population suggest significant vaccine hesitancy and high potential for refusal. From January 27th to March 12th, 2021, the University of Virginia (UVA) Health System, in partnership with the Virginia Department of Health / Blue Ridge Health District (BRHD) provided on-site mobile vaccination clinics at 12 UVA dialysis sites. We conducted a cross-sectional study to evaluate vaccine acceptance and evaluate factors associated with refusal. Of 859 dialysis patients with complete vaccination data, 80% received at least one dose of vaccine and 87% of these vaccinations were provided by the UVA/BRHD partnership. The overall patient refusal rate was low at 14%. Patients refusing SARS-CoV-2 vaccine were more likely to be female, younger and missing a documented flu vaccination during the 2020-2021 season. Attributes such as race or prior infection with SARS-CoV-2 were not significantly associated with vaccine refusal. In conclusion, dialysis patients in our program were surprisingly likely to accept vaccination for SARS-CoV-2. Identifying attributes associated with refusal may help target populations at high risk of vaccine refusal.

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