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Immunization: Barriers, Client Characteristics, and Current Services Within a Northern Health Authority (AB301-20)

Recipient: Keeweetinok Lakes Regional Health Authority

Contribution: $115,804.00

This project aimed to increase immunization rates in the Keeweetinok Lakes Regional Health Authority, a geographically large and culturally diverse region of 25,000 residents, almost 50 per cent of whom are Aboriginal. It hoped to increase immunization rates by inviting people who did not wish to update their child’s immunizations either to sign a “refusal” form or to make an appointment for a subsequent immunization. It then followed up adherence at the 12-month, 18-month, and pre-school visit stage. Researchers found that parents’ lack of knowledge about vaccines may be the most important single barrier to immunization. Lack of access to clinics was also a major factor. Other barriers to immunization included lack of child care and transportation problems. The project increased the region’s immunization rates by about 20 per cent. The written refusal option was found not to be an effective strategy for dealing with under-immunization.

The full report for this project is available on the Alberta Health and Wellness web site at

Fact Sheet

This project was supported by the Health Transition Fund, which was created in 1997 to provide support for evidence-based decision-making in health care reform by supporting pilot and evaluation projects which test innovative approaches to health care delivery. The views expressed herein do no necessarily represent the official policy of federal, provincial, or territorial governments.


Last Modified: 2005-08-29