Mothers Ã¢ÂÂ Knowledge and Perception of Adverse Events Following Immunization in Enugu, South-East, Nigeria
- *Corresponding Author:
- Omotowo Ishola Babatunde
Department of Community Medicine
University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus
PMB 01129 Enugu, Nigeria
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: May 24, 2013; Accepted date: August 15, 2013; Published date: August 20, 2013
Citation: Nnenna TB, Davidson UN, Babatunde OI (2013) Mothers’ Knowledge and Perception of Adverse Events Following Immunization in Enugu, South-East, Nigeria. J Vaccines Vaccin 4:202. doi: 10.4172/2157-7560.1000202
Copyright: © 2013 Nnenna TB, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Background: Active immunization has been able to turn many childhood diseases into distant memories in industrialized countries. It has been found to be one of the most cost-effective public health interventions. However, immunization coverage has continued to falter in Nigeria due to missed opportunities, non availability of services and probably fears of adverse events that follow immunization. We therefore set out to determine mothers’ knowledge and perception of adverse events following immunization (AEFI) in Enugu. Methods: A structured interviewer administered questionnaire was administered to 235 mothers with at least one child < 5 years attending children outpatient clinics. Result: Most mothers (50.1%) had tertiary education, 39.6% and 9.4% had secondary and primary education respectively while 0.9% had no formal education. Five did not know why children were immunized, 188 knew it was to prevent major killer diseases, 33 believed it was to prevent all diseases while 9 believed it was to treat diseases. The knowledge of reason for immunization was significantly associated with maternal educational (p=0.000). Most (89.8%) also knew that the major content of vaccines were chemicals/substances that could help prevent killer diseases. While 1.3% believed vaccines contained harmful materials, 8.9% had no knowledge about the content of vaccines. This was significantly associated with maternal education (p=0.001). Majority (34%) were unable to mention any adverse event, 31.6% mentioned only one adverse event. While, 23.8% mentioned two, 10.6% mentioned three or more AEFI. Eighty percent would continue if their children suffered adverse events, 6% would not continue, 13.6% were undecided and 0.4% did not respond. Conclusion: There is poor maternal knowledge about immunization and the adverse events that could follow immunization. Community participation, and sustained public awareness are needed to erode fears of AEFI.