Mothers’ preference for routine immunization appointment reminders in Gombe, Gombe State, Nigeria
Keywords:Immunization appointment, Mobile phone, Willingness for reminder
Background: Globally, under-5 children account for three-quarter of the two million annual deaths caused by vaccine preventable diseases (VPD). The VPD is comparatively higher in developing countries, and in particular, Nigeria where 1 in 5 childhood deaths is VPD-related. This higher mortality has been attributed to inequitable uptake of immunization variably caused by low education, confusion and forgetfulness among others. The millennium mobile phone proliferation has made it a useful reminder tool. We therefore explore access to mobile phone, willingness and predictors of willingness to receive reminder by mothers.
Methods: Semi-structured questionnaire was deployed in this cross-sectional study to obtain relevant information from 384 mother-child pairs at the immunization clinic (cluster) over 9 months.
Results: A total of 372 (96.9%) and 379 (98.7%) mothers had access to personal and husbands’ phone respectively while 339 (88.3%) mothers showed willingness for a reminder. The factors significantly associated with willingness for immunization reminder were mother’s tertiary education (p=0.008), mother’s unemployment (p=0.011), father’s occupation as senior public servant (p=0.001) and mother’s access to personal phone (p=0.015). Adjusting for confounders, the factors predictive of willingness for immunization reminder were access to personal phone (aOR 11.1, 95% CI 3.160-390.08) and mother’s tertiary education (aOR 2.9, 95% CI 1.822-5, 302).
Conclusions: Access to personal phone and improved education are significant tools in enhancing immunization coverage.
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