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Prioritization of delayed vaccination for pandemic influenza

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  • Limited production capacity and delays in vaccine development are major obstacles to vaccination programs that are designed to mitigate a pandemic influenza. In order to evaluate and compare the impact of various vaccination strategies during a pandemic influenza, we developed an age/risk-structured model of influenza transmission, and parameterized it with epidemiological data from the 2009 H1N1 influenza A pandemic. Our model predicts that the impact of vaccination would be considerably diminished by delays in vaccination and staggered vaccine supply. Nonetheless, prioritizing limited H1N1 vaccine to individuals with a high risk of complications, followed by school-age children, and then preschool-age children, would minimize an overall attack rate as well as hospitalizations and deaths. This vaccination scheme would maximize the benefits of vaccination by protecting the high-risk people directly, and generating indirect protection by vaccinating children who are most likely to transmit the disease.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 92D25, 92D30.


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