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Computational Modeling Can Help Plan Vaccine Introduction, Pitt Study Finds

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Computational modeling can predict the impact of a new vaccine introduction and identify potential disruptions before introducing new vaccines to a developing country's active immunization program, which could help prevent storage and transportation problems, according to a new University of Pittsburgh study.

"Our study highlights the importance of prior planning when introducing new vaccines to avoid last-minute temporary fixes," says Pittsburgh professor Bruce Y. Lee.

The researchers developed a computational model to determine the impact of introducing the rotavirus and 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccines to Niger's Expanded Programs on Immunization (EPI) vaccine supply chain. Introducing the vaccines to Niger's supply chain could displace other EPI vaccines from already limited storage and transport space and could prevent them from reaching patients, according to the Pittsburgh study.

Computational models can help decision makers plan and understand complex systems, according to Lee. "These models could be a very helpful tool for health workers to plan vaccine supply chains," he says.

From University of Pittsburgh News
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