Parent perspectives on a knowledge translation resource for pediatric vaccination pain management


Pain associated with vaccination is a significant barrier to parents’ adherence to their child’s vaccination schedule. Despite decades’ worth of research on best practices for managing children’s vaccination pain, including clinical practice guidelines, there is both a lack of knowledge and poor uptake of evidence by parents and health care providers (HCPs) to manage children’s vaccination pain. Given parents’ low awareness and uptake of this information, KT interventions are needed to address this gap. A two-page KT resource, based on a vaccination pain management clinical practice guideline, was developed in collaboration with Immunize Canada. The purpose of the resource was to share evidence-based vaccination pain management strategies directly with parents in an accessible way via a national parenting magazine. The aim of this study was to evaluate parents’ perspectives on the acceptability, utility, and design of the resource to help guide future parent-directed KT interventions and resources.


Using a qualitative descriptive approach, parents (of children 0-17 years of age) who had participated in a larger study, focused on parents’ use of a KT resource for vaccination pain management, took part in this study. Parents reviewed an electronic copy of the KT resource prior to their child’s upcoming vaccination. At follow up, approximately 6 months later, all children had been vaccinated and semi-structured interviews were conducted with parents to gain an in-depth understanding of their impressions of the resource. Interviews were recorded, transcribed, and analyzed with Braun and Clarke’s reflexive thematic analysis using an inductive approach.


A total of 20 parents (95% mothers) participated. Parents were generally positive in their evaluation of the KT resource and also identified areas for improvement. Parents’ perspectives were captured by 3 main themes, within which they identified both strengths and limitations: (1) The relevance of content in the resource (e.g., the applicability and practicality of the pain management information provided); (2) The layout and design of the resource (e.g., the visual organization and presentation of the information); and (3) The format of information delivery (e.g., parents’ preferred ways of accessing the resource and the timing of access to the information, relative to the child’s upcoming vaccination).


Parents generally found this resource to be acceptable and useful in terms of the content, layout, and delivery of the information. However, parents also identified areas for improvement in the resource, such as the timing of access to the information and physical availability of the resource. These results improve our understanding of aspects that are important to include, or account for, in parent-directed KT resources to promote ease of understanding and use. Future research should consider the impact of this type of resource on parents’ use of vaccination pain management strategies and children’s related vaccination pain outcomes and vaccination compliance.



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