Synthesis of Evidence to Characterize National Measles and Rubella Exposure and Immunization Histories

Risk Anal. 2016 Jul;36(7):1427-58. doi: 10.1111/risa.12454. Epub 2015 Aug 6.


Population immunity depends on the dynamic levels of immunization coverage that countries achieve over time and any transmission of viruses that occur within the population that induce immunity. In the context of developing a dynamic transmission model for measles and rubella to support analyses of future immunization policy options, we assessed the model inputs required to reproduce past behavior and to provide some confidence about model performance at the national level. We reviewed the data available from the World Health Organization (WHO) and existing measles and rubella literature for evidence of historical reported routine and supplemental immunization activities and reported cases and outbreaks. We constructed model input profiles for 180 WHO member states and three other areas to support disease transmission model development and calibration. The profiles demonstrate the significant variability in immunization strategies used historically by regions and member states and the epidemiological implications of these historical choices. The profiles provide a historical perspective on measles and rubella immunization globally at the national level, and they may help immunization program managers identify existing immunity and/or knowledge gaps.

Keywords: Measles; routine immunization; rubella; supplemental immunization activities (SIAs).

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Immunization Programs*
  • Measles / epidemiology*
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Rubella / epidemiology*
  • Vaccination / statistics & numerical data*