Understanding determinants of utilization of outreach immunization services among immunized children in Hoima District, Uganda: A cross sectional study
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Background: Routine immunization coverage in Hoima district remains sub-optimal with frequent outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases (VPDs) in-spite of delivery of outreach immunization services in areas underserved with health infrastructure. The study estimated the level and examined the determinants of utilization of outreach immunization services among immunized children in Hoima district, Uganda. Methods: In this cross sectional study, 476 adult caretakers of children aged 10–23 months in six sub counties of Hoima district were selected using cluster survey sampling and interviewed using a pretested structured questionnaire. To estimate the level of utilization, proportion and number of times children who received immunization at outreach sessions were obtained. To determined predictors of utilization of outreach immunization services logistic regression using odds ratio as the measures of associations was conducted. Results: Overall 87% (416/476) of children had utilized immunization outreach sessions at least once and 4% had completed their immunization schedules at outreach sessions. Predictors of utilization of immunization outreaches were community mobilization prior to outreach session (AOR: 4.9, 95% CI: 1.94-12.61), convenient time of outreach session (AOR: 2.9, 95% CI: 1.32-6.51), not knowing the benefit of immunization (AOR: 0.1, 95% CI: 0.03-0.44), and mentioning at least four Vaccine Preventable Diseases (AOR: 3.0, 95% CI: 1.13-7.88). Conclusion: Utilization of outreach immunization services in Hoima district is high. Community mobilization prior to outreach sessions, convenience of time for outreach, knowing the benefit of childhood immunization as well as being able to mention at least four vaccine preventable diseases are good determinants of utilization of outreach immunization services in Hoima district.