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Master of Science (M.S.)
Year Degree Awarded
The purpose of this research was to determine the factors motivating parents' decisions regarding immunizations for their children according to the recommended schedule of childhood immunizations (DTP, Polio and MMR). The health belief model was used as a basis for the theory. Likert scales were used for the independent variables of susceptibility, seriousness, benefits, barriers and external factors motivating decision. A convenience sample of 79 parents was chosen from those who bring their babies to Amherst Medical Associates for care. Parents were given a questionnaire that addressed concepts in the health belief model using the Likert scales, a true/false format was used to test parents' knowledge of the diseases and immunizations and demographic information was requested. The nurse practitioner or physician also completed a brief questionnaire regarding the child's health and immunization status. The hypotheses of parents immunizing on the recommended schedule and their perceptions of their child's susceptibility to the disease, benefits of the vaccine, barriers to immunizations, and external motivating factors were supported. Seriousness was not a motivating factor in decision making. Demographic variables also did not influence decision.