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A study of the knowledge and attitude towards pulse polio immunization in semi urban areas of South India

Author(s): Joseph N | Subba SH | Nelliyanil M | Kotian SM | Haridath AC | Kishor N | Attavar S | Poornima P | Rane DV | Chaithali H | Husain J

Journal: Australasian Medical Journal
ISSN 1836-1935

Volume: 4;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 81;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Polio | PPI | Awareness | Mangalore

BackgroundThe government of India launched the pulse polioimmunization (PPI) programme in 1995 with the aim oferadicating poliomyelitis by the end of 2000. Despite this,733 children with polio were reported in 2009 alone.Therefore, there is a need to understand the reasonunderlying such high numbers of cases after so many yearsof programme implementation. This study was performedto assess the knowledge of the general population aboutpoliomyelitis and PPI and their attitude and practicetowards PPI.MethodThis cross-sectional study was undertaken in two semiurbanareas of Mangalore city. Only houses in whichchildren under five lived were included in the study. Datawas collected by interviewing any adult member of thehousehold using a pretested questionnaire.ResultsThe literacy rate of study participants was 99%. Only35(10.9%) participants knew the correct mode oftransmission of polio. More than one quarter of the studypopulation were under the misconception that polio is acurable disease. The primary source of information aboutPPI in majority of participants was the television (n = 192;60%). Two-hundred and eighty eight (90%) participantsknew that the purpose of PPI was to eradicate polio. Only128 (40%) participants knew that polio drops can be givento children with mild illnesses and an identical number ofparticipants knew that hot food stuff should not be givenfor at least half an hour following vaccinationadministration. Misconceptions such as PPI causing vaccineoverdose was identified among 7 (2.2%) participants, it is asubstitute for routine immunization was believed among 30(9.4%) participants and that oral polio vaccine preventsother diseases was seen among 76 (23.7%) participants. Theeducational status of the participants was significantlyassociated with their awareness level (χ2 =13.668, DF=6,P=0.033).ConclusionThis study identified a few important misconceptionsassociated with polio and PPI which need to be addressedby large scale awareness campaigns in order to achievepolio eradication in the near future.

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