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Synopsis

From Disneyland to Delhi, there are growing episodes of vaccine hesitancy. Some hesitancy is among parents with reasonable questions before vaccinating their first child, while in other cases, waning vaccine confidence can lead to viral spreads of vaccine refusals and consequent disease outbreaks.

Monitoring public trust and confidence in vaccines can give valuable clues to where and when vaccine refusals and potential disease outbreaks are at risk of occurring.

Dr. Heidi Larson will discuss her research on monitoring vaccine confidence and linking it to underlying fertile ground for drops in vaccine coverage and implications for burden of disease.

Bio

Heidi Larson, PhD, is Director of European Initiatives and a Clinical Associate Professor at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington. Based in London, she is building IHME’s presence in the region through new research projects, dissemination and uptake of IHME’s methods and results, and consultation with regional leaders in population health. She also provides strategic consultation to IHME’s Director and Executive Team.

Dr. Larson currently serves as Senior Lecturer at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, where she leads the Vaccine Confidence Project, conducting research and mapping issues around public trust in vaccines globally. She previously headed Global Communication for Immunization at UNICEF and chaired the Advocacy Task Force for Gavi. Her research specializes in the analysis and evaluation of health and development programs with particular attention to social and political factors that can affect policies and programs. Her particular focus is on risk and rumor management in health programs and technologies, especially vaccines – from clinical trials to delivery – and building public trust.