Editors' ChoiceVaccination

Mapping the barriers to vaccination

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Science  30 Sep 2016:
Vol. 353, Issue 6307, pp. 1510-1511
DOI: 10.1126/science.353.6307.1510-d

Socioeconomic factors and attitudinal beliefs shape worldwide vaccination rates.


Common infectious diseases are in decline thanks to increasing vaccination coverage, but this is a vulnerable triumph: UNICEF reports that nearly 22 million children remained unvaccinated in 2013. A study by de Figueiredo et al. shows two broad indicators at work: one, a suite of socioeconomic factors, and the other, attitudinal beliefs. Their vaccine performance index calls out the countries that are least likely, based on a series of indicators, to meet the Global Vaccine Action Plan target. These countries are largely in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia, where poor vaccination coverage correlates with a lack of access to water, health care, and education. Active refusal to vaccinate is more likely to occur in European countries.

Lancet Global Health 4, e726 (2016).

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