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The care home staff influenza vaccination rate in England is significantly lower than the 75% World Health Organisation recommendation. This represents a substantial potential for resident harm. Barriers to staff vaccination stem from individual and organisational levels. Existing interventions address some but not all barriers and are not underpinned by behavioural science theory. This study aims to estimate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a theory-informed intervention to improve care home staff vaccination rates compared to routine practice.

Set in care homes with both nursing and residential focus, and a range of ownership status, only homes providing long stay care to older people with a staff vaccination rate below 40% are eligible to participate. Participation expressions of interest will be sought using a variety of approaches prior to seeking consent.

The primary outcome measure is the proportion of staff vaccinated at 6 months, with secondary outcome measures being proportion vaccinated at 3 months, numbers of staff sick days, general practitioner and nurse visits to care home, care home resident hospitalisations and mortality.

Based on the assumptions that the mean cluster (care home) size is 54 staff, a coefficient of variation of 0.48, control vaccination rate is 55%, intervention 75%, intra-cluster correlation coefficient of 0.2 and with 90% power, and 20% attrition, we require 39 care homes per arm.

Blocked randomisation will be at the level of care home, stratified by the proportion of non-white care home staff, and implemented by Norwich Clinical Trials Unit.

The intervention comprises co-designed information videos and posters, provision of in-house staff vaccination clinics, and incentive scheme and monthly data collection on trial outcomes. Beyond usual practice, the control arm will additionally contribute monthly data.

Data will be collected at the start, monthly and at 6 months, and analysis will be blind to allocation. Statistical analysis will use the intention-to-treat principle with the difference in vaccination rates between groups compared using a random effect logistic regression model at the staff-level.

This will be the first study to use a theory-informed intervention designed to comprehensively address identified barriers to care home staff influenza vaccination.

Trial registration: ISRCTN ISRCTN22729870. Registered on 24 August 22. Secondary identifiers: R209939, IRAS 316820, CPMS 53812.
Original languageEnglish
Article number989
Publication statusPublished - 9 Dec 2022


  • Care homes
  • Employees
  • Influenza vaccination
  • Long-term care facilities
  • Nursing homes
  • Randomised controlled trial
  • Residential homes
  • Staff

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