George Mason University
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George Mason University

GCH Graduate Student Suyane Viana de O. Mesquita Receives Student Poster of Distinction

June 13, 2017

Suyane Viana de O. Mesquita, a GCH Master’s in Public Health student, was awarded the national "Student Poster of Distinction" award at the American Academy of Health Behavior conference in March 2017. Suyane’s poster featured her research on exploring vaccine decision-making among uninsured Latin-American immigrant adolescent females and their primary female caregivers.

Coverage for adolescent vaccines, particularly the HPV vaccine, remains sub-optimal in the uninsured Latin-American immigrant population. In her research, Suyane found that the mothers and daughters she interviewed had favorable attitudes toward vaccines, but their knowledge of specific vaccines varied.

Suyane also studied decision-making and identified mothers—the caregivers—as the primary decision-makers regarding vaccines. As a result, she concluded that increasing vaccine-related knowledge among adolescent-caregiver dyads is critical and that interventions to increase adolescent vaccination among this population should heavily focus on caregivers.

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