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Indian J Pediatr. 1990 Jul-Aug;57(4):588-90.

Reliability of mother as an informant with regard to immunisation.

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RUHSA Department, Christian Medical College and Hospital, North Arcot District, Tamil Nadu.



This publication reports the findings of a 1987 study designed to measure the reliability of Indian mothers as informants of immunization coverage. The study took place in the Kilvazhithunayan Kuppam Block in the North Arcot District of Tamil Nadu, a region with a population of approximately 104,000 inhabitants. Whenever immunization is carried out, proper procedure calls for the paramedical worker involved to register the information on a health card. To carry out the study, trained field workers randomly selected the names of children between the aged of 6-12 months. The field workers then interviewed the mothers of these children with regard to immunization coverage. The mother's response was checked according to the health card. The study revealed a concordance rate of 85% between the mother's verbal response and the recorded response. All the mothers who had visited the immunization clinic correctly identified the doses, but only 12% of the mothers with unimmunized children (21/178) correctly identified their children's immunization status. The study also found that mothers tended to overestimate the immunization coverage by about 8%. But considering the high degree of concordance between the verbal and recorded responses, the study suggests that mothers do form a reliable source of information concerning immunization coverage, encouraging information for areas where immunization records are absent or inadequate.

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