Epidemiology and Infection

Special Article

The use of mathematical models in the epidemiological study of infectious diseases and in the design of mass immunization programmes

D. J. Nokesa1 and R. M. Andersona1

a1 Parasite Epidemiology Research Group, Department of Pure and Applied Biology, Imperial College, London SW7 2BB

Community-based immunization is the primary method available today by which to reduce the scale of morbidity, and, in certain countries, mortality, associated with the most common childhood viral and bacterial infections. The decline in the incidences of a number of important vaccine preventable infections, such as polio, diphtheria and measles, in many countries, and the worldwide eradication of the smallpox virus, is testimony to the effectiveness of this method of control.