Determinants of parents' decision to vaccinate their children against rotavirus: results of a longitudinal study

Health Educ Res. 2012 Dec;27(6):1069-80. doi: 10.1093/her/cys088. Epub 2012 Aug 20.


Rotavirus disease is a common cause of health care utilization and almost all children are affected by the age of 5 years. In Canada, at the time of this survey (2008-09), immunization rates for rotavirus were <20%. We assessed the determinants of a parent's acceptance to have their child immunized against rotavirus. The survey instruments were based on the Theory of Planned Behavior. Data were collected in two phases. In all, 413 and 394 parents completed the first and second interviews, respectively (retention rate 95%). Most parents (67%) intended to immunize their child against rotavirus. Factors significantly associated with parental intentions (Phase 1) were as follows: perception of the moral correctness of having their child immunized (personal normative belief) and perception that significant others will approve of the immunization behavior (subjective norm), perceived capability of having their child immunized (perceived behavioral control) and household income. At Phase 2, 165 parents (42%) reported that their child was immunized against rotavirus. The main determinant of vaccination behavior was parental intention to have their child vaccinated, whereas personal normative beliefs influenced both intention and behavior. The acceptability of the rotavirus vaccine will be higher if health promotion addresses parental knowledge, attitudes and beliefs regarding the disease and the vaccine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Canada
  • Child, Preschool
  • Decision Making*
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Immunization Programs / statistics & numerical data*
  • Infant
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Parent-Child Relations
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Qualitative Research
  • Rotavirus Infections / prevention & control*
  • Rotavirus Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Rotavirus Vaccines