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Gargano L.M.,Emory University | Thacker N.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Choudhury P.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Weiss P.S.,Emory University | And 6 more authors.
International Health | Year: 2013

Background: New vaccine introduction is important to decrease morbidity and mortality in India. The goal of this studywas toidentify perceptions that areassociatedwith administration of four selected vaccines for prevention of Japanese encephalitis (JE), typhoid fever, influenza and human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. Methods:Arandomsample of 785 pediatricians froma national list of Indian Academyof Pediatrics memberswas selected for a survey to assess perceptions of vaccine effectiveness and safety, and vaccine administration practices. Logistic regression was used to assess factors associated with selective or routine use. Results: Pediatricians reported administering typhoid (91.6%), influenza (60.1%), HPV(46.0%) and JE (41.9%) vaccines selectively or routinely. Pediatricians who perceived the vaccine to be safe were significantly more likely to report administration of JE (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.3 to 5.3), influenza (OR 4.3, 95% CI 2.0 to 9.6) and HPV vaccine (OR 6.2, 95% CI 3.1 to 12.7). Pediatricians who perceived the vaccine to be effective were significantly more likely to report administration of JE (OR 3.3, 95% CI 1.6 to 6.5), influenza (OR 7.7, 95% CI 2.5 to 23.1) and HPV vaccine (OR 3.2, 95% CI 1.6 to 6.4) Conclusion: Understanding the role perceptions play provides an opportunity to design strategies to build support for vaccine use. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. All rights reserved.


Thacker N.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Vashishtha V.M.,IAP Committee on Immunization | Awunyo-Akaba J.,GenerationS | Mistry R.F.,Community Health
Vaccine | Year: 2013

The authors illustrate by way of civil society (CS) experiences in Pakistan, India, and Ghana how the guiding principles of CS and civil society organizations (CSOs) align with those of the Global Vaccine Action Plan (GVAP); (i.e., country ownership, shared responsibility and partnership, equity, integration, sustainability, and innovation). These experiences show how CS is contributing to GVAP goals such as global polio eradication and improving vaccination coverage by removing barriers and ultimately working toward achieving Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 4-reducing child mortality. A number of CSOs working in the field of child health share some of the objectives enlisted in GVAP: that immunization becomes a national health priority; individuals, families, communities understand the importance of immunization; benefits of immunization are equitably extended to all people; and vaccination systems are part of an integrated health system. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


Thacker N.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Choudhury P.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Gargano L.M.,Emory University | Weiss P.S.,Emory University | And 11 more authors.
International Journal of Infectious Diseases | Year: 2012

Objectives: The objectives of this study were to compare attitudes and perceptions of primary health center (PHC) physicians and pediatricians in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar toward polio disease, immunization, and eradication, and to identify barriers to polio eradication. Methods: PHC physicians from blocks with at least one confirmed polio case during January 2006 to June 2009 were selected for an in-person survey. Pediatricians were members of the Indian Academy of Pediatrics and were selected from a national directory of members for telephone or mail survey. Results: A higher percentage of PHC physicians than pediatricians reported that an unvaccinated child was susceptible to polio (82.1% vs. 63.0%, p< 0.0001) and that polio disease was severe in a child aged 1-5 years (77.7% vs. 62.2%, p< 0.0001). PHC physicians and pediatricians expressed confidence in the protectiveness and safety of oral polio vaccine and cited parents' lack of awareness of the importance of polio eradication as an important barrier to eradication. Strengthening routine immunization efforts was reported as the leading intervention required to eradicate polio. Conclusions: PHC physicians and pediatricians support and have confidence in the success of polio eradication efforts. These findings will be useful for policy-makers involved in the planning of eradication strategies. Providers and parents need to maintain confidence in polio vaccination if polio is to be eradicated. © 2012 International Society for Infectious Diseases.


Thacker N.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Choudhury P.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Gargano L.M.,Emory University | Weiss P.S.,Emory University | And 10 more authors.
Journal of Tropical Pediatrics | Year: 2013

Although India was removed from the list of polio endemic countries in January 2012, maintaining the focus on polio vaccination is critically important to prevent reintroduction of the virus. In 2009-2010, we conducted a study to assess the attitudes and practices of frontline health workers in India regarding polio immunization in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. More than 95% of auxiliary nurse midwives (ANMs) and accredited social health activists (ASHAs) agreed that polio supplementary immunization campaigns helped in increasing acceptance of all vaccines. The majority of ANMs (60-70%) and ASHAs (56-71%) believed that polio immunization activities benefitted or greatly benefitted other activities they were carrying out. Less than 5% of ANMs and ASHAs felt they were very likely to face resistance when promoting or administering polio vaccine. This study provides information that may be useful for programs in other countries for polio eradication and in India for measles elimination. © The Author [2013]. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.


Choudhury P.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Thacker N.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Gargano L.M.,Emory University | Weiss P.S.,Emory University | And 6 more authors.
Vaccine | Year: 2011

Background: India has faced considerable challenges in eradicating polio. Uttar Pradesh (UP) and Bihar are the two states in India where transmission of polio has never been interrupted. Private pediatricians are important stakeholders for vaccine delivery and maintaining public confidence in vaccines. The purpose of this study was to investigate the attitudes and perceptions of pediatricians in India regarding polio immunization and their opinions about various strategies regarding polio eradication in the country. Methods: A random sample of 785 pediatricians belonging to the Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) were selected for the survey with over sampling of members located in Bihar and UP. Potential participants were either contacted by phone or sent a self-administered anonymous questionnaire by mail. For this analysis both sets of responses were combined. Surveys were conducted from June 2009 to June 2010. Results: A total of 398 surveys were completed (51%). Nearly all respondents indicated that polio eradication is still an important priority (99.7%). Ninety-six percent of pediatricians believed that strengthening routine immunization efforts remains the best way to eradicate polio in endemic areas. Other measures thought to be important in eradicating polio are mass campaigns with IPV (73%) and mass campaigns with bivalent OPV (59%). Pediatricians also identified several barriers to polio eradication which included parents' lack of awareness of the importance of polio vaccination (88.8%), parents' lack of confidence in polio vaccine (64.0%), religious beliefs (59.2%), fear of side effects (59.2%), lack of time or priority (56.6%), superstition (50.3%) and cultural beliefs (46.4%). Conclusion: There is still strong support for polio eradication efforts among IAP members. Pediatricians in India strongly believe that improving the coverage of routine immunization remains the best way to eradicate polio. There is an urgent need to improve awareness, build confidence in the program, and remove barriers among parents. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.


Gargano L.M.,Emory University | Thacker N.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Choudhury P.,Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP | Weiss P.S.,Emory University | And 7 more authors.
Vaccine | Year: 2012

Introduction: According to the World Health Organization in 2008, pneumonia accounted for 20% of deaths and diarrheal diseases accounted for 13% of deaths among children under 5 in India. Vaccines are available for Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV)), Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib vaccine), and rotavirus. Barriers to including these vaccines in routine immunization schedule in India include potential negative impacts on fragile existing immunization programs and cost. Pediatricians who are members of the Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) are important stakeholders for vaccine delivery and maintaining public confidence in vaccines. Methods: A random sample of 785 pediatricians belonging to IAP was selected for the survey conducted from June 2009 to June 2010. Descriptive analyses using sampling weights were performed to evaluate the distributions of variables assessing vaccine-related attitudes and behaviors among pediatricians. Logistic regression was used to assess factors associated with routine vaccine use. Results: The majority of pediatricians reported administering PCV (85.6%), Hib (95.9%), and rotavirus (80.2%) vaccine selectively or routinely. Pediatricians who had high perceived disease susceptibility were 2.42 times more likely to report routine administration of Hib vaccine (OR 2.42, 95% CI 1.24, 4.74). Pediatricians who had high perceived Hib vaccine efficacy were 4.74 times more likely to administer Hib vaccine routinely (OR 4.74, 95% CI 2.09, 10.74). Perceptions of disease susceptibility and severity or of vaccine safety and efficacy were not associated with routine administration of PCV or rotavirus vaccine. Conclusions: Understanding predictors of routine use of a new vaccine could help focus interventions to improve the routine use of other vaccines. The importance of perceived susceptibility to and severity of diseases caused by S. pneumoniae, Hib, and rotavirus and perceived efficacy and safety of the vaccines by pediatricians presents an opportunity to design strategies to build support for new vaccine introduction and may have important implications for national immunization policy in India. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


PubMed | Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP
Type: Comparative Study | Journal: International journal of infectious diseases : IJID : official publication of the International Society for Infectious Diseases | Year: 2012

The objectives of this study were to compare attitudes and perceptions of primary health center (PHC) physicians and pediatricians in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar toward polio disease, immunization, and eradication, and to identify barriers to polio eradication.PHC physicians from blocks with at least one confirmed polio case during January 2006 to June 2009 were selected for an in-person survey. Pediatricians were members of the Indian Academy of Pediatrics and were selected from a national directory of members for telephone or mail survey.A higher percentage of PHC physicians than pediatricians reported that an unvaccinated child was susceptible to polio (82.1% vs. 63.0%, p<0.0001) and that polio disease was severe in a child aged 1-5 years (77.7% vs. 62.2%, p<0.0001). PHC physicians and pediatricians expressed confidence in the protectiveness and safety of oral polio vaccine and cited parents lack of awareness of the importance of polio eradication as an important barrier to eradication. Strengthening routine immunization efforts was reported as the leading intervention required to eradicate polio.PHC physicians and pediatricians support and have confidence in the success of polio eradication efforts. These findings will be useful for policy-makers involved in the planning of eradication strategies. Providers and parents need to maintain confidence in polio vaccination if polio is to be eradicated.


PubMed | Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP
Type: | Journal: Vaccine | Year: 2013

The authors illustrate by way of civil society (CS) experiences in Pakistan, India, and Ghana how the guiding principles of CS and civil society organizations (CSOs) align with those of the Global Vaccine Action Plan (GVAP); (i.e., country ownership, shared responsibility and partnership, equity, integration, sustainability, and innovation). These experiences show how CS is contributing to GVAP goals such as global polio eradication and improving vaccination coverage by removing barriers and ultimately working toward achieving Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 4-reducing child mortality. A number of CSOs working in the field of child health share some of the objectives enlisted in GVAP: that immunization becomes a national health priority; individuals, families, communities understand the importance of immunization; benefits of immunization are equitably extended to all people; and vaccination systems are part of an integrated health system.


PubMed | Indian Academy of Pediatrics IAP
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of tropical pediatrics | Year: 2013

Although India was removed from the list of polio endemic countries in January 2012, maintaining the focus on polio vaccination is critically important to prevent reintroduction of the virus. In 2009-2010, we conducted a study to assess the attitudes and practices of frontline health workers in India regarding polio immunization in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. More than 95% of auxiliary nurse midwives (ANMs) and accredited social health activists (ASHAs) agreed that polio supplementary immunization campaigns helped in increasing acceptance of all vaccines. The majority of ANMs (60-70%) and ASHAs (56-71%) believed that polio immunization activities benefitted or greatly benefitted other activities they were carrying out. Less than 5% of ANMs and ASHAs felt they were very likely to face resistance when promoting or administering polio vaccine. This study provides information that may be useful for programs in other countries for polio eradication and in India for measles elimination.

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