To assess the availability of HPV vaccine in the Korean American community in Los Angeles city.METHODS:
HPV vaccine availability was assessed by calling Korean American (KA) physician offices in Los Angeles, serving the KA community. Physicians were identified through two different online Korean Yellow Pages. Investigators called the offices expressing desire for HPV vaccination, with a standardized script asking about availability, cost, and recommendations.RESULTS:
Eighty-seven KA physician offices (Pediatricians 19.5%, Family Medicine 21.8%, Internal Medicine 44.8%, and Obstetrician-Gynecologists 13.8%) were identified in Los Angeles city. Eighty-one (93.1%) offices were successfully called, while 6 (6.8%) could not be reached after 3 attempts. Twenty-five (30.9%) offices provided the HPV vaccine, while 55 (67.9%) did not, and 1 (1.2%) was not sure. When asked if the vaccine was covered by PPO insurance, the responses were: Don't know (35.6%), Depends on insurance (12.6%), Yes (13.7%), No (4.6%), and 33.3% did not respond to the question. The cost of the vaccine ranged from $120 for each vaccine (+$50-$80 office visits) to $300 for each vaccine (+$100 office visits). Amongst specialties, there was a statistically significant difference in those providing the HPV vaccine (P<.001): Pediatricians (73.3% Yes vs 26.7% No), Family Medicine (26.7% Yes vs 70.6% No), Internal Medicine (10.5% Yes vs 89.5% No), and OB/GYN (50% Yes vs 50% No). Pediatricians were most likely to have the HPV vaccine available for patients, while other specialties were far less likely to provide the HPV vaccine (Family Medicine OR=6.6, Internal Medicine OR=23.4, and OBGYN OR=2.8).CONCLUSION:
Physicians serving the KA community have low rates of HPV vaccine availability, which may be contributing to low vaccination rates.