Title: Modelling and assessing public health policies to counteract Italian measles outbreaks

Authors: Giovanni Scirè

Addresses: BioPhotonics and Nanomedicine Laboratory (BPNLab), Istituto di Fisica Applicata Nello Carrara, IFAC – CNR, Via Madonna del Piano 10, Sesto Fiorentino 50019, Italy

Abstract: This study aims to understand, through explanatory research, the key factors that led to the 2017 measles outbreak in Italy, the causes of the low level of immunisation and the causes of possible cyclical phenomena of measles epidemics. This topic's comprehension has required a holistic approach, merging epidemiological aspects, socioeconomic aspects (including the evolution of mistrust in vaccinations, infodemy and fake news) and health law constraints. A specific SIR system dynamics (SD) model was built to reproduce the relevant cause-and-effect relationships between social interactions, the public institutions' behaviour and the measles outbreaks. SD results permit the assessment of the health policies to counteract the measles outbreaks. Findings, limits and further research recommendations are briefly reported in the conclusions.

Keywords: system dynamics; infodemic; measles; communicable diseases; sir model; vaccination; public health.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSPM.2021.118832

International Journal of Simulation and Process Modelling, 2021 Vol.16 No.4, pp.271 - 284

Received: 01 Oct 2020
Accepted: 29 Apr 2021

Published online: 08 Nov 2021 *

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