Objective: To assess the current measles vaccination status in Bangladesh, explain changing differentials in measles vaccination, and determine contexts that may improve measles vaccination coverage.
Methods: Secondary data analysis of datasets (2004–2014) from the nationally representative Bangladesh Demographic and Health Surveys that followed stratified, multi-stage cluster sampling design conducted both in urban and rural contexts.
Results: 5468 children aged 12–23 months were surveyed, of whom 892 (16%) reported non-compliance to measles vaccine. After simultaneous adjusting for covariates in multivariate logistic regression, children who came from a poor socio-economic background, who had mothers with no formal schooling, who were underweight, of higher birth order (≥4), who had adolescent mothers, who had a history of home delivery and who had no exposure to media were observed to be significantly associated with lack of measles vaccination. Measles vaccination coverage among children of adolescent mothers was consistently low. Despite lack of media exposure, measles vaccination status gradually increased from 26% in 2004 to 33% in 2014. Lack of maternal education was no longer associated with measles vaccination status in 2007, 2011 and 2014. Stunted children continued to be associated with lack of measles immunisation in 2014. Children with higher birth order demonstrated 53% excess risk for not being immunised with measles vaccine. Mothers with no exposure to mass media were two times more likely to have children without measles immunisation as indicated by BDHS 2014 data.
Conclusions: Our findings will help policy makers formulate strategies for expanding measles vaccination coverage in order to achieve further reduction in disease burden and mortality in Bangladesh.