A study of the impact of ImmunizeON, a new iPhone app, on maternal beliefs and attitudes toward pediatric vaccination

In vulnerable infants, on-time vaccination coverage is critical to prevent morbidity and mortality from vaccine-preventable diseases. The results of a previous study of on-time vaccination coverage in the province of Ontario suggest that levels are sub-optimal. ImmunizeON is an iPhone app that permits parents to track their children’s immunizations.  Designed for Ontario children born after August 2011, the app incorporates the currently recommended immunization schedule and creates a virtual yellow card for the parent, notifying parents of upcoming appointments, and linking to immunization fact sheets. We aim to determine whether using the ImmunizeON app will have any significant effect on parental beliefs and attitudes toward pediatric vaccination and the importance of vaccinating children according to the recommended immunization schedule.

This study will provide one of the first assessments of the utility of a smart phone app to impact upon immunization attitudes. It will also provide preliminary information that will serve as the foundation for the submission of a grant to conduct a pragmatic RCT of the impact of the ImmunizeON app versus sham app on on-time vaccination rates.