Original Research

Determinants of parents’ decisions on childhood immunisations at Kumasi Metropolis in Ghana

Doris Hagan, Deliwe R. Phethlu
Curationis | Vol 39, No 1 | a1554 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v39i1.1554 | © 2016 Doris Hagan, Deliwe R. Phethlu | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 11 May 2015 | Published: 29 July 2016

About the author(s)

Doris Hagan, Department of Community and Health Sciences, School of Nursing, University of the Western Cape, Ghana
Deliwe R. Phethlu, Department of Community and Health Sciences, School of Nursing, University of the Western Cape, South Africa


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Abstract

Objective: To describe factors that influence parents’ decisions on childhood immunisations at Kumasi Metropolis in Ghana.
Study design: Quantitative cross-sectional survey.
Methods: A sample of 303 parents was obtained from a monthly accessible population of 1420 individuals from the five district hospitals through convenience sampling of respondents at immunisation sessions in Kumasi. Data obtained from the survey were analysed with SPSS version 21 software.
Results: Most parents were aware of child immunisations, but they had limited knowledge on vaccines and immunisation schedules. Antenatal nurses constituted the most accessible source of vaccine information. The study established a high percentage of complete immunisation, influenced by parents’ fear of their children contracting vaccine-preventable diseases. Remarkably, some parents indicated that they immunised their children because they wanted to know the weight of their children. Forgetfulness and lack of personnel or vaccine at the centres were the reasons given by the few parents who could not complete immunisation schedules for their children, whereas the socio-demographic variables considered did not influence parents’ decision on immunisation.
Conclusion: Knowledge on immunisation could not influence immunisation decisions but parents’ fear of vaccine-preventable diseases, awareness on the benefits of immunisations and sources of vaccine information were the main factors that influenced immunisation decision at Kumasi in Ghana.

Keywords

Childhood; Ghana; Influence; Immunization; Parents’ decision; Vaccine

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