Factors affecting vaccine handling and storage practices among immunization service providers in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria
Background: Improper handling has been identified as one of the major reasons for the decline in vaccine potency at the time of administration. Loss of potency becomes evident when immunised individuals contract the diseases the vaccines were meant to prevent.
Objective: Assessing the factors associated with vaccine handling and storage practices.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional study. Three-stage sampling was used to recruit 380 vaccine handlers from 273 health facilities from 11 Local Government areas in Ibadan. Data was analysed using SPSS version 16.
Results: Seventy-three percent were aware of vaccine handling and storage guidelines with 68.4% having ever read such guidelines. Only 15.3% read a guideline less than 1 month prior to the study. About 65.0% had received training on vaccine management. Incorrect handling practices reported included storing injections with vaccines (13.7%) and maintaining vaccine temperature using ice blocks (7.6%). About 43.0% had good knowledge of vaccine management, while 66.1% had good vaccine management practices. Respondents who had good knowledge of vaccine handling and storage [OR=10.0, 95%CI (5.28 –18.94), p < 0.001] and had received formal training on vaccine management [OR=5.3, 95%CI (2.50 – 11.14), p< 0.001] were more likely to have good vaccine handling and storage practices.
Conclusion: Regular training is recommended to enhance vaccine handling and storage practices.
Keywords: Vaccine handling, storage practices, immunization, service providers, Ibadan, Nigeria
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