Vaccination hesitancy among parents of school children in the United Arab Emirates: a cross-sectional study
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Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine, Gulf Medical University, Ajman, United Arab Emirates
Abu Dhabi Vocational Education and Training Institute, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Publication date: 2023-04-27
Popul. Med. 2023;5(Supplement):A1995
Background and Objectives: Parental vaccine hesitancy may hinder routine vaccinations of children and increase the risk of vaccine-preventable infections. This study was conducted to assess the prevalence and determinants of parental vaccine hesitancy in the United Arab Emirates. Methods and Materials: This cross-sectional study was conducted among 446 the parents using a self-administered questionnaire. Parents Attitudes about Childhood Vaccines (PACV) survey tool was used to assess the vaccine hesitancy and WHOs Vaccine Hesitancy Survey Questions were used to seek information about the factors. Data analysis was done using SPSS version 28. Chi square test was used to find the association and binary logistic regression was used to determine the factors. Results: The prevalence of vaccine hesitancy among parents was found to be 36%. Vaccine hesitancy was influenced by age, education, and gender. It was more common for mothers, parents with a bachelor’s degree, and parents younger than 40 to express hesitation. The odds ratio showed that the variables: those who do not have enough knowledge about vaccines, those who do not trust the health system, those who do not think vaccine preventable diseases are serious, immunization not as a social norm, religion, culture, political decisions, cost, and negative motive of pharmaceutical companies in manufacturing vaccines were almost 4 times more likely to be vaccine hesitant. Conclusions: Prevalence of vaccine hesitancy is in the UAE is about 36% and is a major concern. Many factors have been identified from this study which make parents hesitant towards vaccines. Health care professionals are in an excellent position to provide parents with information regarding the potential benefits of immunizations.