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Measles Vaccine Coverage at Al-Ahsa Province during Quarantine Period of COVID 19 Pandemic, Saudi Arabia, 2020.


Childhood vaccination coverage during the COVID-19 pandemic has presented an important public health challenge globally. This study investigates the impact of the total quarantine period related to COVID-19 pandemic on measles vaccination coverage at Al-Ahsa Province, Saudi Arabia.


This descriptive cross-sectional study aimed to estimate the prevalence of children who missed the MMR vaccine during quarantine period (23 March to 21 June 2020) and compare vaccination coverage during full quarantine period with the same period over the previous five years. It also aimed to describe the demographic features of children who missed the measles vaccine doses during quarantine and influencing factors.


We identified 9815 children who had missed one measles vaccine during quarantine period. There was a statistically significant decrease in overall measles vaccination coverage in the quarantine period of 2020 compared with the previous five years (p-value < 0.01). Among 378 parents who responded, the highest percentage of children who had missed the vaccine was 1.5 - 6-year-old (29%). Vaccination was significantly higher among children whose parents were aged 15-25 years (p-value <0.01), fathers with bachelors degree education (p-value <0.01), and governmentally employed mothers (p-value <0.01), but was significantly lower among children with older parents 36-45 years (p-value <0.01), secondary school educated fathers (p- value<0.005), and unemployed mothers (p-value <0.01). The highest reason stated for delaying the vaccine was fear of COVID-19 infection (56%). About 79% of children had been vaccinated within 4 months after quarantine was over.


The measles vaccine coverage in quarantine period in 2020 significantly declined compared with the same time frame in the previous 5 years as a result of the pandemic. Several influencing factors were involved; particularly fear of COVID 19 infection.