Factors Associated with the Completion of Hepatitis B Vaccine among University Students in Nigeria

Factors Associated with the Completion of Hepatitis B Vaccine among University Students in Nigeria

Author by Dr. Janet Kio

Language: English


Hepatitis B virus (HBV) has been identified by WHO as one of the deadliest viral diseases in Africa due to its high prevalence and complications. Thus urgent research and policy attention is needed to stem its spread. The study assessed factors associated with the completion of hepatitis B vaccine among Babcock University students, Nigeria. Multistage sampling procedure was employed to select 360 students to participate in the study after completing all requirements for ethical clearance. Data gathered from the respondents were subjected to descriptive analysis using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS Ver. 17). Most of the respondents are adults above 20 years and were aware of the HBV (89%). Despite serious efforts made by the University at educating the students about Hepatitis B, more than 40 % of the students still do not know the causative organism and are totally oblivious of the importance of vaccination. Also, 73% of the students had not completed the recommended 3 dosage vaccines. The findings also showed that despite the high level of awareness up to 44 percent of the students were not sure of their status or have not been previously immunized, indicating that their knowledge did not motivate their actions or practice. Factors which positively influenced completion of immunization dosage were the students’ perceived need to be protected from HBV, the availability of vaccine, their knowledge of the fact that the monetary cost of vaccine had already been included in the school bills, their opinion that immunization is part of the criteria for complete registration, their knowledge of the effectiveness of the vaccine to protect against HBV, and their perceived susceptibility to HBV infection. Conversely, factors constraining respondents’ completion of immunization dosage were their forgetting the date for next appointment, their perception that the vaccine was not necessary, their lack of knowledge about the total number of doses to be taken, their lack of knowledge or inability to remember having been given a vaccine for HBV and perceived fear of possible side effect of the vaccine. There is the need for the institution to re-work the awareness education for Hepatitis B to strongly highlight the need for complete dosage vaccination in order to prevent infection.

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