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Pattern of Prenatal Care and Infant Immunization Status in a Comprehensive Adolescent-Oriented Maternity Program

Catherine Stevens-Simon, MD; Lisa S. Kelly, PA, CHA; Dena Singer, PA, CHA
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150(8):829-833. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1996.02170330055009.
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Objective:  To examine the relationship between patterns of prenatal care utilization and the subsequent pattern of preventive infant health care utilization among patients in a comprehensive, multidisciplinary, adolescent-oriented maternity program.

Methods:  We hypothesized that the mothers of incompletely immunized 8-month-olds were less compliant with their own prenatal care appointments than were mothers of fully immunized 8-month-olds. We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 150 consecutively delivered infants and their adolescent mothers. Data concerning the pattern of prenatal and postnatal use of preventive health care services and potentially confounding maternal characteristics were collected.

Results:  Of the 150 infants aged 8 months, 22 (14.7%) were incompletely immunized. Mothers of completely and incompletely immunized infants did not differ in age, school enrollment status, or compliance with prenatal appointments. However, the latter group initiated prenatal care later, obtained fewer prenatal visits, returned later for postpartum care, and were more likely to be black and to report inadequate family support after delivery. Three of the 5 characteristics entered a logistic regression function that predicted the risk of incomplete immunizations at 8 months of age: third-trimester initiation of prenatal care (odds ratio, 4.05; 95% confidence interval, 1.19-13.7), inadequate family support (odds ratio, 3.42; 95% confidence interval, 1.17-10.0), and black race (odds ratio, 3.14; 95% confidence interval, 1.19-8.69). The total model χ2 was 15.8 (P<.001).

Conclusions:  Among patients in a comprehensive adolescent-oriented maternity program, the timing of the first prenatal visit helps to identify infants who are at increased risk for incomplete primary immunization status. Our findings favor preferential allocation of scarce, costly outreach services to infants born to adolescent mothers who enter prenatal care during the third trimester.Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150:829-833

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