In the United States, the effective, safe huma papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine is underused and opportunities to prevent cancer continue to be missed. National guidelines recommend completing the 2–3 dose HPV vaccine series by age 13, well before exposure to the sexually transmitted virus. Accurate characterization of the facilitators and barriers to full implementation of HPV vaccine recommendations in the primary care setting could inform effective implementation strategies.
We used the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR) to systematically investigate and characterize factors that influence HPV vaccine use in 10 primary care practices (16 providers) using a concurrent mixed methods design. The CFIR was used to guide collection and analysis of qualitative data collected through in-person semi-structured interviews with the primary care providers. We analyzed HPV vaccine use with data abstracted from medical charts. Constructs that most strongly influenced vaccine use were identified by integrating the qualitative and quantitative data.
Of the 72 CFIR constructs assessed, seven strongly distinguished and seven weakly distinguished between providers with higher versus lower HPV vaccine coverage. The majority of strongly distinguishing constructs were facilitators and were related to characteristics of the providers (knowledge and beliefs; self-efficacy; readiness for change), their perception of the intervention (relative advantage of vaccinating younger vs. older adolescents), and their process to deliver the vaccine (executing). Additional weakly distinguishing constructs that were facilitators were from outer setting (peer pressure; financial incentives), inner setting (networks and communications and readiness for implementation) and process (planning; engaging, and reflecting and evaluating). Two strongly distinguishing constructs were barriers to use, one from the intervention (adaptability of the age of initiation) and the other from outer setting (patient needs and resources).
Using CFIR to systematically examine the use of this vaccine in independent primary care practices enabled us to identify facilitators and barriers at the provider, interpersonal and practice level that need to be addressed in future efforts to increase vaccine use in such settings. Our findings suggest that implementation strategies that target the provider and help them to address multi-level barriers to HPV vaccine use merit further investigation.