Can Digital Tools Be Used for Improving Immunization Programs?

Front Public Health. 2016 Mar 8:4:36. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2016.00036. eCollection 2016.


In order to successfully control and eliminate vaccine-preventable infectious diseases, an appropriate vaccine coverage has to be achieved and maintained. This task requires a high level of effort as it may be compromised by a number of barriers. Public health agencies have issued specific recommendations to address these barriers and therefore improve immunization programs. In the present review, we characterize issues and challenges of immunization programs for which digital tools are a potential solution. In particular, we explore previously published research on the use of digital tools in the following vaccine-related areas: immunization registries, dose tracking, and decision support systems; vaccine-preventable diseases surveillance; surveillance of adverse events following immunizations; vaccine confidence monitoring; and delivery of information on vaccines to the public. Subsequently, we analyze the limits of the use of digital tools in such contexts and envision future possibilities and challenges.

Keywords: communication; immunization; immunization programs; information dissemination; registries; vaccination; vaccination strategies; vaccine confidence.

Publication types

  • Review