A Recommendation to Use the Diffusion of Innovations Theory to Understand School Nurses' Role in HPV Vaccine Uptake.

International quarterly of community health education

PubMedID: 24366021

Rosen B, Goodson P. A Recommendation to Use the Diffusion of Innovations Theory to Understand School Nurses' Role in HPV Vaccine Uptake. Int Q Community Health Educ. 2013;34(1):37-49.
Vaccinations represent one of the greatest public health achievements of the past century, but their success largely depends on populations' uptake. Seven years after its approval in 2006 for females, the HPV vaccination rates remain relatively low. Previous literature provides information about research examining U.S. physicians, pediatricians, and other healthcare providers' knowledge, attitudes, and professional practice toward the HPV vaccine. No research has yet investigated U.S. school nurses' role in educating the school community about the vaccine's benefits. Diffusion of Innovations theory is an appropriate perspective for examining school nurses as opinion leaders who can influence the uptake of the HPV vaccine for youth. This theory explains how innovations diffuse throughout a social system, and highlights the construct of opinion leadership. School nurses exhibit the characteristics of opinion leaders; therefore, Diffusion of Innovations can be a useful lens for assessing their role in efforts to promote HPV vaccination for youth.