The meaning of vaccination. How do parents in India justify a choice no to vaccinate their children?

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OsloMet - Oslo Metropolitan University

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Master i International Social Welfare and Health Policy


Even though the government emphasize on the importance of immunization in India, the vaccine preventable diseases are still prevailing in the country. The perception of parents regarding vaccines vary according to different situations. This affects their choice regarding vaccines, whether to accept, decline or delay vaccines. Moreover, there are many factors that affect the vaccination uptake and many methods are suggested to improve vaccine coverage. Identifying the perceptions of parents, factors that hinders the process and the methods adopted to overcome the problem are important to improve the immunization coverage. A literature review was done based on the previous studies on the topic. A qualitative research leads the researchers to understand the views and expressions of the research participants and this helps in developing an understanding of how the people interpret their experiences(Jane Sutton 2015). A qualitative research method using semi-structured interviews with a preplanned interview guide was applied. Parents of children under five years were interviewed. 10 participants were selected from each of the three different states -Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu. A pilot study was conducted before the main study. After the interviews were conducted, the data was transcribed, and analyzed. The data was compared with the theoretical perspectives and the previous studies found in the literature review. Levesque, Harris & Russels (2013) framework of access to health-care is the main theoretical perspective used in this study. However, this framework was supplemented with other models relevant in the study of health care utilization, like the Ajzen & Fishbein’s (1980) theory of Reasoned Action (TRA), Hochbaum, Rosenstock, and Kegels the Health Belief Model (HBM)(1952), and Rogers’ (2003) diffusion of innovation theory. The findings were discussed with reference to these theoretical frameworks. The interview was done in a rural area in three Indian states. Both higher-class people and lower class people were interviewed.




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