eISSN: 2300 - 8660
ISSN: 0031-3939
Pediatria Polska - Polish Journal of Paediatrics
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vol. 94
Original paper

Vaccination refusal as a growing issue – a description of the phenomenon occurring among parents of infants born at the Professor Wojciech Starzewski Memorial Centre for Women and Children’s Health in Zabrze during first three years of its functioning

Anna Talik-Nowak
Adrianna Jagosz
Justyna Czubilińska-Łada
Ewelina Jarząbek
Janusz Bursa

Pediatr Pol 2019; 94 (3): 181-184
Online publish date: 2019/06/28
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Vaccinations are a safe and effective way to protect against infectious diseases. They are particularly important in the neonatal and infancy period, when the immune system is not yet fully developed. The growing strength of the controversial trend for not vaccinating children cannot be ignored. In Poland an increasing number of parents are deciding not to vaccinate.

Aim of the study
The aim of the study is to determine the proportion of unvaccinated infants born in CZKiD in its first three years of functioning (01.11.2014 – 31.10.2017), define the parents’ education level and answer the question of whether it influences their decision not to vaccinate, and ascertain whether there is a growing tendency not to vaccinate newborns.

Material and methods
Retrospective analysis of newborns whose parents did not agree to vaccinations recommended during first 24 hours of life, despite lacking medical contraindications to do so. The work is prepared on the basis of medical documentation and analysis of hospitals’ quarterly lists of parents avoiding children’s vaccinations.

Among 5246 (2014/2015 – 1384, 2015/2016 – 1772, 2016/2017 – 2090) babies born in the analysed period, 130 (2.48%) have not been vaccinated (2014/2015 – 1.73%, 2015/2016 – 1.98%, 2016/2017 – 3.4%). 109 newborns come from on-time deliveries (38–41 week). The vast majority of newborns were eutrophic (114). The general condition of all newborns was assessed as good (Apgar). Approximately 98% of parents represented at least secondary education level. Moreover, most of them did not disclose clear-cut cause of refusal.

Our three years’ experience shows that a growing number of parents do not accept birth vaccination doses. What is more, their decision is made even before birth, and from the beginning of hospitalisation they are determined not to allow vaccinations. Most often, this decision is not justified, even though there is a formal possibility to do so. The majority of parents refusing vaccinations are those with at least secondary education. At the moment there is no such data in Polish papers.


vaccination refusal, newborns, BCG, tuberculosis, HBV, immunisation

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