Browsing by Author "Mueller, Melissa"
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- ItemOpen AccessExperiences of Albertan Families with Young Children during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Descriptive Report(2020-11-30) McDonald, Sheila; Edwards, Sarah; Hetherington, Erin; Racine, Nicole; Mueller, Melissa; McArthur, Brae Anne; Madigan, Sheri; Dewey, Deborah; Letourneau, Nicole; Tough, Suzanne; Geisbrecht, GeraldThis report describes data collected from Albertan families on the COVID-19 Impact Survey implemented in May 2020, which built on a unique collaboration across two longitudinal cohorts in Alberta: The All Our Families study (AOF) and the Alberta Pregnancy Outcomes and Nutrition study (APrON). Our objectives were as follows: (1) Describe household infections of COVID-19 in Alberta among families with school-aged children; (2) Describe urban Albertan family experiences of the pandemic within the first 3-4 months of the outbreak across the areas of financial impact, maternal mental health and well-being, school and daily life, and relationships in the home; and (3) Describe associations among key predictor variables (e.g., financial impact) and outcomes (e.g., maternal anxiety, concern for child’s well-being). Study Sample: AOF and APrON Cohort participants reflect families parenting at least one child in between the ages of 8 and 12. While the respondents represent a broad range of income, education and ethnicity, they are typified by adequate income, food and housing security and partnered marital status. Highlighted Results: Physical Impact: At the time of data collection in May, 2020, over 90% of families did not have personal experience with COVID-19, either through personal infection, infection of a child, extended family member or close friend. Vaccine Intentions: Although over 60% of mothers and their children would obtain a COVID-19 vaccine when available, almost 30% are undecided and 8% would not obtain a vaccine. Financial Impact: In 58% of all families, at least one parent experienced job loss, loss of main income source, or reduced employment hours. One in five mothers reported difficulty meeting financial needs for the household, and 5% of families were experiencing food insecurity. Over 40% of respondents reported at least some impact on their ability to meet financial obligations. Mental Health and Wellness Impact: Mothers reported elevated levels of stress (21%), anxiety (25%) and depression (35%). Approximately 26% of mothers reported having limited coping skills. Almost 90% of mothers have undertaken more domestic tasks in the home. Mothers also reported that their children showed increased sadness and behavioural challenges. The COVID-19 pandemic has had profound financial and mental health impact on some families. Investment in strategies to alleviate financial stress, provide parenting supports, and alleviate mental health concerns is critical. Suggested Citation: McDonald S, Edwards S, Hetherington E, Racine N, Mueller M, McArthur BA, Madigan S, Dewey D, Geisbrecht G, Letourneau N, Tough S. Experiences of Albertan Families with Young Children during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Descriptive Report. Calgary, Alberta: University of Calgary; 2020.
- ItemOpen AccessMaternal perceptions of childhood vaccination: explanations of reasons for and against vaccination(2019-01-10) McNeil, Deborah A; Mueller, Melissa; MacDonald, Shannon; McDonald, Sheila; Saini, Vineet; Kellner, James D; Tough, SuzanneAbstract Background Understanding reasons for and against vaccination from the parental perspective is critical for designing vaccination campaigns and informing other interventions to increase vaccination uptake in Canada. The objective of this study was to understand maternal vaccination decision making for children. Methods Mothers participating in a longitudinal community-based pregnancy cohort, the All Our Babies study in Calgary, Alberta, completed open-ended survey questions providing explanations for the vaccination status of their child by 24 months postpartum. Qualitative responses were linked to administrative vaccination records to examine survey responses and recorded child vaccination status. Results There were 1560 open-ended responses available; 89% (n = 1391) provided explanations for vaccinating their children, 5% (n = 79) provided explanations for not vaccinating/delaying, and 6% (n = 90) provided explanations for both. Themes were similar for those vaccinating and not vaccinating/delaying; however, interpretations were different. Two broad themes were identified: Sources of influence and Deliberative Processes. Sources of influence on decision making included personal, family, and external experiences. Deliberative Processes included risk, research, effectiveness, and balancing risks/benefits. Under Deliberative Processes, responsibility was a category for those vaccinating; while choice, instrumental/practical, and health issues were categories for those not vaccinating/delaying. Mothers’ levels of conviction and motivation provided a Context for understanding their decision making perspectives. Conclusions Vaccination decision making is complex and impacted by many factors that are similar but contribute to different decisions depending on mothers’ perspectives. The results of this study indicate the need to examine new intervention approaches to increase uptake that recognize and address feelings of pressure and parental commitment to choice.