Expectant mothers who receive discouraging information regarding immunization were more likely to delay infant immunization than mothers who received no immunization information, according to findings recently published in Pediatrics.
“Most future parents make their decisions regarding the immunization of their infant before that child’s birth,” Priya Veerasingam, MBChB, department of general pediatrics at Starship Children’s Hospital, Auckland New Zealand, and colleagues wrote. “... It is unknown whether receiving encouraging information increases or receiving discouraging information decreases the likelihood of timely immunization.”
Researchers examined data from a cohort of 6,682 infants born in New Zealand from 2009 to 2010, whose mothers received information about immunization approximately 39 weeks into their pregnancy. Independent connections of immunization information received with immunization timeliness were described by using adjusted ORs and CIs.
Veerasingam and colleagues indicated that 565 women received both encouraging and discouraging types of information, 846 received discouraging information, and 2,416 women received information considered encouraging.
Researchers found that on follow up, less than half of the original cohort remembered receiving the information about immunization. When compared with infants of women who received no immunization information (71% immunized on time), infants of women who received discouraging information only (57% immunized on time; OR = 0.49; 95% CI, 0.38–0.64) or encouraging and discouraging information (61% immunized on time; OR = 0.51; 95% CI, 0.42–0.63) were at lower odds of receiving all immunizations on time. Receiving encouraging information only was not connected with infant immunization timeliness (73% immunized on time; OR = 1; 95% CI, 0.87–1.15).
Veerasingam and colleagues offered a suggestion for implementing their findings.
“ ... It may be necessary to identify those parents who have already received information that discourages them from immunizing their infants and develop immunization promotion strategies specific to this group,” they wrote. “For information provided about immunization to be effective, it is important to determine the informational needs of the target population because these may vary between countries and by maternal demographics, such as parity or ethnicity.” – by Janel Miller
The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.