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Exploring pneumonia risk factors in Vietnamese infants: a survey of new mothers
  1. Nguyen TK Phuong1,2,
  2. Tran T Hoang2,3,
  3. Kirsty Foster4,5,
  4. Christine L Roberts4,6,
  5. Ben J Marais1,4
  1. 1 Discipline of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, The University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
  2. 2 Da Nang Hospital for Women and Children, Da Nang, Vietnam
  3. 3 Da Nang University of Medical Technology and Pharmacy, Da Nang, Vietnam
  4. 4 Sydney Medical School, The University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
  5. 5 Medical Education, Northern Clinical School & Kolling Institute, Sydney, Australia
  6. 6 Clinical and Population Perinatal Health Research, Kolling Institute, Northern Sydney Local Health District, Sydney, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Nguyen TK Phuong; thng5150{at}


Objective To understand the prevalence of pneumonia risk factors and perceived barriers to risk factor reduction among Vietnamese infants.

Methods We conducted a cross-sectional survey of mothers in the postnatal wards of Da Nang Hospital for Women and Children in central Vietnam from 10 February 2017 to 24 February 2017.

Results Of 286 mothers surveyed, 259 (91%) initiated breast feeding and 207 (72%) intended to continue exclusive breast feeding for 6 months. No mother smoked cigarettes, but 42% of fathers did. Mothers’ decision not to smoke was motivated by concerns for their own health and that of their baby. Households rarely used wood or coal for cooking (6%). Mothers indicated near universal (99%) uptake of the National Expanded Program of Immunization vaccinations. Few (64; 22%) mothers knew about the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine; 56/64 (88%) indicated that they would purchase it for their infants. Family members rarely influenced mothers’ decisions about breast feeding or vaccination, except in two instances where fathers were concerned about vaccine-related adverse effects.

Conclusion Modifiable pneumonia risk factors were uncommon among newborn babies in central Vietnam, apart from paternal cigarette smoke exposure. Successful local implementation of the WHO Essential Newborn Care package as well as high levels of maternal education and decision autonomy was observed.

  • Immunisation
  • Infant Feeding
  • Respiratory

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  • Contributors All authors contributed to the design of the protocol and questionnaire. NTKP collected the data. NTKP and BJM conceptualised the manuscript and wrote the first draft. All authors gave constructive inputs and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding No project funding received. Da Nang government provided an international PhD scholarship to the first author (NTKP).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval Da Nang Hospital for Women and Children Ethics Committee.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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