Assessment of parental perception of malaria vaccine in Tanzania
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Clinical trials of the RTS,S malaria vaccine have completed Phase III and the vaccine is on track for registration. Before making decisions about implementation, it is essential to prepare the ground for introducing the vaccine by assessing awareness and willingness to use malaria vaccines and to provide policy makers with evidence-based information on the best strategies to engage communities to manage the introduction of malaria vaccine in Tanzania.; In November 2011, as part of a large cross-sectional study of all 23 regions of Tanzania (mainland Tanzania and Zanzibar) was conducted during Tanzanian Integrated Measles Campaign (IMC) survey. In this study, the variables of interests were awareness and willingness to use a malaria vaccine. The main outcome measure was willingness to use a malaria vaccine. Logistic regression was used to examine the influence of predictive factors.; A representative sample of 5502 (out of 6210) women, aged 18 years or older and with children under 11 months old, was selected to participate, using random sampling probability. Awareness of the forthcoming malaria vaccine, 11.8 % of participants in mainland Tanzania responded affirmatively, compared to 3.4 % in Zanzibar (p value <0.0001). 94.5 % of all respondents were willing to vaccinate their children against malaria, with a slight difference between mainland Tanzania (94.3 %) and Zanzibar (96.8 %) (p value = 0.0167).; Although mothers had low awareness and high willingness to use malaria vaccine, still availability of malaria vaccine RTS,S will compliment other existing malaria interventions and it will be implemented through the Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals (IVB) programme (formerly EPI). The information generated from this study can aid policy makers in planning and setting priorities for introducing and implementing the malaria vaccine.