A systematic review of interventions for reducing parental vaccine refusal and vaccine hesitancy

Vaccine. 2013 Sep 13;31(40):4293-304. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.07.013. Epub 2013 Jul 13.


Unvaccinated individuals pose a public health threat to communities. Research has identified many factors associated with parental vaccine refusal and hesitancy toward childhood and adolescent immunizations. However, data on the effectiveness of interventions to address parental refusal are limited. We conducted a systematic review of four online databases to identify interventional studies. We used criteria recommended by the WHO's Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on immunization (SAGE) for the quality assessment of studies. Intervention categories and outcomes were evaluated for each body of evidence and confidence in overall estimates of effect was determined. There is limited evidence to guide implementation of effective strategies to deal with the emerging threat of parental vaccine refusal. There is a need for appropriately designed, executed and evaluated intervention studies to address this gap in knowledge.

Keywords: Parents; Vaccine hesitancy; Vaccine refusal.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Parents / psychology
  • Treatment Refusal / psychology*
  • Vaccination / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Vaccination / psychology*