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Vaccines4Kids: Assessing the impact of text message reminders on immunization rates in infants

Niederhauser, Victoria, Johnson, Melissa, Tavakoli, Abbas S.
Vaccine 2015 v.33 no.26 pp. 2984-2989
behavior change, children, demographic statistics, humans, immunization, infants, motivation, parents, statistical models, surveys, vaccines, Hawaii
The purpose of this study was to examine the effect text messages (TM) immunization reminders have on immunization rates in the first 7 months of life. This randomized-control trial enrolled 57 parent/infant dyads and had a 74% completion rate (43) at the end of the study period. The study was approved by Committee on Human Subjects at the University of Hawaii Institutional Board Review. All participants completed a demographics form and a Barriers to Immunization Survey (SHOTS survey) at the start and end of the study. Parents received TM at 4, 7, 12, 15, 20, & 23 weeks of child's age. The intervention group received immunization reminders and the control group received healthy baby messages. In the overall mixed model, between enrollment and 7 months of age, the barriers to immunizations decreased for all parents significantly. There were no significant differences in immunization rates between groups at 7 months of age. Positive responses from regarding TM interventions show this is a promising intervention, but further research is required regarding how to address behavior change and motivation for health prevention behaviors with TM.