Vaccination is a key tool for combatting infectious diseases. Once successfully immunized, an individual is often protected for many years, reducing the risk of illness in the future. In this way, vaccines are one of the most cost-effective public-health measures available and have led to a huge reduction in mortality and morbidity worldwide.
In the UK the total spent on vaccination is around £200 million a year, so it is important that this money is spend in the most cost-effective manner - we therefore research health economic modelling, predicting the willingness to pay for each vaccine.
In low and middle-income countries, the spend on vaccines is generally low, but it is equally important that vaccines are deployed in the most optimal way, maximising the use of a limited resource
Finally, in many outbreaks, vaccination can be used as an effective control measure, enabling public-health officials to contain and control outbreaks; again the key question is determining the optimal way the vaccine can be deployed.
Three main research projects focus on vaccination:
This project brings high-throughput pathogen sequencing and predictive modelling to bare on the control of multiple virus pathogens in East Africa. Some of this work focuses on the impact of vaccination.
This project predicts the cost-effectiveness of changes to the UK vaccination programme based on sophisticated mathematical modelling.
This project is developing mathematical models of infectious disease spread and control by vaccination for plague and rift valley fever.
In addition, disease specific work using vaccination as a control method includes: Foot-and-Mouth Disease, Human Papillomavirus, Influenza (both pandemic and seasonal), Measles, Pertussis, Plague, Pneuococcal Disease, Rabies, RSV and Schistosomiasis.