Back to browse results
Country-Level Assessment of Missed Opportunities for Vaccination in South Africa: Protocol for Multilevel Analysis
Authors: Duduzile Ndwandwe, Ntombenhle J. Ngcobo, Abdu A. Adamu, Chukwudi Nnaji, Thandiwe Mashunye, Arlette M. Leufak, Sara Cooper, Olalekan A. Uthman, and Charles S. Wiysonge
Source: JMIR Research Protocols, Vol. 9, No. 9; DOI:
Topic(s): Immunization
Country: Africa
  South Africa
Published: SEP 2020
Abstract: Background Vaccination is one of the greatest public health interventions of all time. Vaccination coverage in South Africa has shown a steady improvement in reaching the national target. However, while there is progress nationally, there are districts within the country that are below the set target for vaccination coverage. One of the main drivers of suboptimal vaccination coverage is thought to be missed opportunities for vaccination. Objective This study aims to understand the magnitude and determinants of missed opportunities for vaccination in South Africa. Methods The 2016 South African Demographic and Health Survey will be used to conduct multilevel regression analyses to determine individual and contextual factors associated with missed opportunities for vaccination in South Africa. The perspectives of parents attending health care facilities in South Africa will be explored through exit interviews and focus group discussions. Similarly, perspectives of the health care providers will be sought to understand enablers and barriers to vaccination coverage at the facility level. Insights to such factors will aid in designing tailor-made interventions to improve vaccination coverage in South Africa. Results Ethical review submission is planned for October 2020. Data collection is expected to be underway in January 2021. Conclusions The extent of missed opportunities in South Africa coupled with the associated factors presents an opportunity for efforts to increase uptake in districts where vaccination coverage is below the national target. Population-level data such as those from the 2016 South African Demographic Health Survey will provide an idea of the magnitude of missed opportunities for vaccination in South Africa at the national and subnational levels. The findings of the study will inform national and subnational policy implementation on vaccinations and help to find context-specific interventions to improve vaccination coverage.