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Vaccine uptake: new tools for investigating changes in age distribution and predicting final values

Cameron, J.C. and Friederichs, V. and Robertson, Chris (2007) Vaccine uptake: new tools for investigating changes in age distribution and predicting final values. Vaccine, 25 (32). pp. 6078-6085. ISSN 0264-410X

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Abstract

Knowing the age at which children are immunised, and detecting any changes gives important insight into aspects of parental decision-making and health service delivery. Estimating likely final vaccine uptake is also important; to ensure adequate population protection and indicate if any additional immunisation activity is required. We present two new applications of existing methodologies to facilitate these aims. Firstly, to enable easier visualisation of age at vaccine uptake, we have applied the technique of Kernel density estimates to detecting potential delays in childhood vaccination. Secondly, we present a method for predicting likely final vaccine uptake, from early data. Both give vital policy information on, for example, new vaccines and existent programmes, such as MMR vaccination.