The Medical Journal of Basrah University,
2020, Volume 38, Issue 1, Pages 37-46
Introduction: Immunization is a proven tool for controlling and eliminating the life-threatening infectious diseases among children. In most developed countries, immunization programs have had dramatic success in reducing morbidity and mortality rate significantly. Although the children received immunization free of charge, the immunization status in developing countries did not achieve the immunization targets of the WHO. The factors and barriers that influence the immunization program include child demographic factors, family factors and other factors.
Purpose: It was to evaluate immunization completeness among children younger than 2 years, demographic characteristics and familial data associated with immunization rates and the reasons of immunization incompleteness as reported by the mothers attending PHC centers in Basrah.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in four PHC centers in Basrah during a period of February to April 2019; two hundred twenty five mothers with children aged below 2 years were interviewed.
Results: About one third of children were incompletely immunized. The study found significant association of immunization completeness with child’s age (p<0.05). Other demographic factors (child’s gender, birth weight, mother’s education, occupation and family income) were insignificantly associated with immunization completeness (p>0.05). The most reported reasons for incomplete immunization were: remoteness of PHC centers and transportation problems, fear, negligence and forgetfulness, vaccine unavailability and child’s illness.
Conclusion: Incomplete immunization was observed in (29.8%) of the children, which represent an alarming percentage.
Keywords: Immunization; Compliance; Basrah; Child and Maternal Factors