Effectiveness Of Communication Methods In Mobilizing People For Polio Immunization

Project and Seminar Material for Public Health

Effectiveness Of Communication Methods In Mobilizing People For Polio Immunization


This study was on effectiveness of communication methods in mobilizing people for polio immunization. The total population for the study is 200 residents of Isale Osun. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 200 respondents were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies. From the study, the communication channels through which the people of Isale Osun receive information about polio vaccine were shown to include advocacy, social mobilization, behaviour change communication, providing essential information on print media, through nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and civic groups, and through sensitization and awareness campaigns. The study concluded that although the level of awareness of polio immunization in is high, the communication channels are not optimized fully. There is need for detailed sensitization programmes through various media facilities should be carried out to emphasize the reasons for the emphasis on polio immunization.

Table Of Content

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title Page
  • Declaration
  • Approval
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of Content

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

  • 1.1 Background to the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of Problem
  • 1.3 Objectives of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Operational Definition of Terms
  • 1.8 Organization of Study

Chapter Two

2.0 Literature Review

  • 2.1 Conceptual Review
  • 2.2 Acceptability of Immunization
  • 2.3 Factors Influencing Effectiveness of Communication Methods and Programs
  • 2.4 Theoretical Review

Chapter Three

3.0 Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Study Area
  • 3.3 Target Population
  • 3.4 Instruments for Data Collection
  • 3.5 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.6 Method of Data Analysis

Chapter Four

4.0 Results and Discussion

  • 4.1 Results
  • 4.2 Discussion

Chapter Five

5.0 Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Conclusion
  • 5.2 Recommendations
  • References
  • Appendix

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

Immunization remains one of the most cost-effective public health strategies to reduce morbidity and mortality associated with vaccine preventable diseases. Routine Immunization (RI) has contributed immensely to significant reduction in mortality from these vaccine preventable diseases among children. Globally, it is estimated that about two to three million deaths occur yearly as a result of Vaccine Preventable Diseases (VPD) with approximately 1.5 million deaths among under-five children (Yahya, 2017).

The World Health Organization (WHO) established the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) in 1974, with the goal of ensuring full accessibility of Routine Immunization vaccines to all children. According to the EPI, a child should receive Bacillus Chalmette Guerin (BCG), three doses of Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) and Diphtheria Pertussis Tetanus (DPT), and measles vaccines by 12 months of age to ensure maximum protection against VPDs. Provision of these vaccines to the recommended ages and intervals will provide the children adequate protection from VPDs.
Polio is the common name for poliomyelitis, which comes from the Greek words for grey and marrow, referring to the spinal cord, and the suffix- ‘itis’, meaning inflammation. Poliomyelitis, shortened, became polio. It is an infectious disease caused by poliovirus. Poliovirus is usually spread from person to person through infected fecal matter entering the mouth, it is also spread by food infected in saliva. The infected people may spread the disease for up to six weeks even if no symptoms are present. The disease may be diagnosed by finding the virus in the faeces or detecting antibodies against it in the blood. The disease is preventable by polio vaccines. Polio vaccines are vaccines used to prevent poliomyelitis. There are basically two types which are commonly used, an inactivated poliovirus given by injection (IPV) and a weakened poliovirus given by mouth (Onyebuchi, 2016).

The two vaccines have eliminated polio from most part of the world, and drastically reduced the number of cases reported each year from an estimated 350,000 in 1988 to a drastic 33 in 2018. The world has come very close to eradicating polio through global eradication initiative, a programme which communication channels and interventions have played a consistently central role. The public health initiative is organized by WHO, Rotary international, the US centers for Disease Central and Prevention (CDC) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Mass media and information dissemination approaches used in immunization efforts worldwide have contributed to this success. However, polio does still exist, and Nigeria remains one of the top 3 countries in the world that have never stopped transmission of polio with Afghanistan and Pakistan filling the slot. Polio eradication efforts today face some of the greatest communication challenges they have ever encountered (Ogundele, 2019).

Many of these have received attention in national and global media, but they grow from discussions in homes and villages and amongst political, community, and religious leaders. Marginalized communities where WPV circulates are in dire need of basic services, with polio vaccination conducted whilst other issues are under addressed.
Looking at past events in Nigeria, the importance of communication for eradicating polio has been realized within the sociocultural, religious, and political contexts. These and other challenges require effective communication action that has been successful when applied in a planned and systematic way (The Communication Initiative (CI), 2008).

Polio eradication requires that nearly every child under age 5 receives multiple doses of vaccine, with some doses provided during routine immunization and the rest through supplemental immunization activity (SIA) campaigns. Failure to immunize children results in an immunity gap that enables wild poliovirus (WPV) to circulate, resulting in large human and financial costs. Communication strategies for polio are designed to support increased immunization coverage by identifying missed children, disaggregating reasons for refusals, identifying the most effective channels of information, and engaging effective influencers to overcome resistance (Roberts, 2016).

Beyond the traditional campaigns, stakeholders have introduced a series of innovative and impactful special interventions targeted at vaccinating more children potentially missed through the House‐to‐House campaigns. These strategies included: Hospital vaccinations, Market vaccination, Reaching Every Child (REC) and Reaching Every Settlements (RES), vaccinations in the IDP camps etc. The two strategies have resulted in more settlements being accessed and thus more children vaccinated in security compromised areas than the previous years. For instance, through RES alone, 251,000 and 60,000 children were reached.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has certified there has been no evidence of wild polio in Nigeria for more than a year and removed it from the list of polio-endemic countries. These are milestones both for Nigeria and for the global campaign to eradicate polio. Nonetheless, continued effort and vigilance will be critical over the next two years to declare the country and the rest of Africa completely free of the disease. Toward these ends, Nigeria has significantly increased polio immunity among its population over the past three years.

1.2 Statement of Problem

Efforts to eradicate poliomyelitis have been going on. Success has been achieved inLatin American and the Caribbean countries, but Nigeria lags behind in achieving this success. Nigeria had the highest number of polio cases globally (99 cases in January 2014). A significant number of cases were found to be predominantly in the northern states (Niger, Bauchi, Kano, Zamfara and Kaduna (WHO, 2014). Speculations made by people are that this may be due to religious, economic or other social reasons like the belief that to have the disease is better than immunization among the people (FBA, 2015). However, the spread has grown to cover more grounds and more states. The country had witnessed a 95% decline in the number of polio cases in 2010 and was so close to the finishing line for polio eradication. However, as at July 11, 2012, Nigeria has recorded 54 new cases of wild poliovirus in 10 states compared to 25 cases during the same period in 2011. In 2012, the country declared polio eradication a national emergency (UNICEF, 2012).

It is therefore imperative to investigate why poliomyelitis persists among communities in Nigeria. There could be many reasons for this persistence such as lack of knowledge, allegations of secret agenda in immunization, parents’ misconception that immunizations are fuelled by western countries’ determined to impose population control on local communities, and mothers’ preoccupations with other tasks to take their children for immunization (Gedlu and Tesemma2012; Hennessey, 2010; and FBA, 2015). Notwithstanding the fluctuation of immunizations over the years, Nigeria’s poliomyelitis eradication activities have significantly reduced the poliomyelitis disease burden but have not had the anticipated result of eradicating the disease.

This study will evaluate the effectiveness of communication in mobilizing people for immunization. Over significant periods of time, the polio vaccination is usually announced house-to-house, asking people especially mothers who have a child snapped to their back in the public space such as markets, or announced by the town criers. There is a need to evaluate if this propagation method has been effective in disseminating the polio vaccination and related information.

As we move towards the final phase of polio eradication, one of the key challenges confronting the government, UNICEF and other partners involved in social mobilization is how to tackle resistance to Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) by mobilizing the unreached, underserved communities while still motivating the majority already reached to participate in polio vaccination (Obregon, 2009).It is therefore necessary to critically assess the current communication methods employed and to evaluate the effectiveness thereof.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The aim of this study is to assess the effectiveness of communication methods in mobilizing people for polio immunization in Isale Osun, Osun state.

The following specific objectives are formulated to achieve this aim:

  1. To find out the level of awareness about polio vaccine among people of Isale Osun.
  2. To identify the communication channels through which the people of Isale Osun receive information about polio vaccine.
  3. To investigate the effectiveness of the communication channels on the behavior of Isale Osun people to polio vaccine administrations.

1.4 Research Questions

The research questions which guide the study were formulated as follows;

  1. What is the level of awareness about polio vaccine among people of Isale Osun?
  2. What are the communication channels through which the people of Isale Osun receive information about polio vaccine?
  3. What is the effectiveness of the communication channels on the behavior of Isale Osun people to polio vaccine administrations?

1.5 Hypothesis

  • HO: The communication methods in mobilizing people for polio immunization in Isale Osun is ineffective

1.6 Significance Of The Study

This study aims to know how effective the communication method used in creating awareness for polio immunization, Survey and also Focused groups discussions will be used in other to get a well detailed result. Using the health belief model which has always been a guide to explain the people’s health behavior and the project would also give an insight on which communication method has been able to communicate effectively to the people of Isale Osun whenever the polio immunisation is on going and the location where they are supposed to take their children to get vaccinated

Additionally, the findings of this study would guide the Government, Non-Governmental Organizations and other stakeholders/sponsors of polio immunization on the future plan and strategic measures to take in the planning and execution of similar health related projects in Osun state, and Nigeria at large. Lastly, it is hopeful that this study will serve as a future reference point for other researchers who want to further research in this area.

1.7 Operational Definition Of Terms

Poliomyelitis (Polio):

Is a highly infectious viral disease, which mainly affects young children. In a small proportion of cases, the disease causes paralysis, which is often permanent.

Communication Methods:

Refers to immunization campaigns established by governments to eliminate poliomyelitis (polio) by vaccinating all children under the age of five years against the polio virus. The projects fight poliomyelitis through a large-scale, pulse vaccination programme and monitoring for polio cases.


Is the act of using something in an effective way. Resource utilization and cost-effective therapy are an integral part of modern practice.


Is the reduction of an infectious disease’s prevalence in the global host population.

1.8 Organization of Study

The study comprises of 5 chapters. In chapter one, the concepts are introduced and the problem of the study is established with the research objectives and questions. Chapter two presents the literature review while chapter three presents the research methodology. The fourth chapter presents the results and discussion, and the last chapter presents the conclusion and recommendation.

Chapter Five

5.0 Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Conclusion

In conclusion, this research has been able to establish a fact that the level of awareness of polio immunization in is high but the communication channelsare not optimized fully. It is also established that factors such as location of respondents, religion of respondents, logistics, and position of the child among others are all associated with acceptance and non-acceptance of polio immunization. Religion and cultural factors and lack of trust are the key issues and challenges that confront the acceptance of polio. This would affect the adequacy of polio communication programs in the study area.

5.2 Recommendations

The following recommendations were made based on the findings of the study;

  1. Based on the findings which show higher acceptance rate of polio immunization, the areas with low acceptance rate should learn the methods adopted by the other areas which made them achieved the polio free status or reduced polio prevalence.
  2. Government should pay more attention to other deadly childhood diseases and make available essential drugs to all the primary health care centres so as to reduce the suspicions on polio immunization and increase compliance.
  3. There is need for detailed sensitization programmes through various media facilities should be carried out to emphasize the reasons for the emphasis on polio immunization. The people should be educated on the severity and epidemic nature of polio which spreads easily

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