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Int J Infect Dis. 2002 Dec;6(4):277-82.

A mathematical model to measure the impact of the Measles Control Campaign on the potential for measles transmission in Australia.

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National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance of Vaccine Preventable Diseases, The New Children's Hospital, Westmead, NSW, Australia.



The aims of this study were to determine the impact of the Australian Measles Control Campaign (MCC) on the transmission dynamics of measles by calculating the reproductive number (R) before and after the MCC, and to predict measles control in Australia in the future.


A national serosurvey was conducted before and after the MCC. Sera were tested for anti-measles IgG using enzyme immunoassay (EIA). A mathematical model, using serosurvey results and vaccine coverage estimates, was used to calculate the change in R after the MCC.


The values of R calculated before and after the MCC were 0.90 and 0.57. At vaccine coverage levels indicated by the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR), the value of R will exceed 1 (the epidemic threshold) in 2007-2008 nationally, and sooner in some regions of Australia. Coverage of at least 84% with two doses of MMR is required to sustain measles control.


The Australian MCC had a significant impact on the transmission dynamics of measles. However, current vaccine coverage levels may result in indigenous measles transmission by 2007. Sustained efforts are required to improve coverage with two doses of MMR and to ensure elimination of indigenous measles transmission.

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