, Volume 2, Issue 2, pp 128-133

A survey on factors affecting acceptance of measles vaccine

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Abstract

The reasons for the low level of acceptance of measles vaccine were investigated through interviews with the mothers at the time of their children enrollment in the first year of attendance at several nursery schools in Milan city and its suburbs. Data were also collected on the natural disease.

Only 192 (13.8%) of the 1386 children included in the study had already suffered natural measles and 45 of them before the age of 12 months. Of the total, 10% of the children had been vaccinated, more in the city of Milan than in the suburbs. Approximately one-half of the vaccinations had been administered by family doctors and the other half in Public Health facilities. Less than half of the vaccinations administered in the city of Milan proved to have been registered in Public Health Office records. The frequency of vaccinated children was significantly higher among mothers with higher levels of education than among those with lower levels of education.

The reasons for the lack of vaccination most. frequently given by the mothers of the 1247 unvaccinated children were ≪ ignorance about the vaccine ≫ (38% of the mothers) and the ≪ belief that measles is an innocuous disease ≫ (36%). These were followed by ≪ fear of post-vaccinal reactions ≫ and ≪ advice against measles vaccine ≫ given, in most cases, by family doctors. The frequency of responses for each one of these reasons was significantly different in Milan with respect to the suburbs. This difference was also evident in the comparisons between mothers with higher levels of education with respect to mothers with low levels of education.

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