Vaccination and the theory of games
|Bauch, Chris T.
|Earn, David J. D.
|Department of Mathematics and Statistics
|Voluntary vaccination policies for childhood diseases present parents with a subtle challenge: if a sufficient proportion of the population is already immune, either naturally or by vaccination, then even the slightest risk associated with vaccination will outweigh the risk from infection. As a result, individual self-interest might preclude complete eradication of a vaccine-preventable disease. We show that a formal game theoretical analysis of this problem leads to new insights that help to explain human decision-making with respect to vaccination. Increases in perceived vaccine risk will tend to induce larger declines in vaccine uptake for pathogens that cause more secondary infections (such as measles and pertussis). Following a vaccine scare, even if perceived vaccine risk is greatly reduced, it will be relatively difficult to restore pre-scare vaccine coverage levels.
|National Academy of Sciences
|Copyright 2004 The Authors
|All items in the Atrium are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
|Vaccination and the theory of games
|Bauch, C. T. and Earn, D. J. D. (2004). Vaccination and the theory of games. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 101(36): 13391-13394. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0403823101
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