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Externalities and Social Influence in Childhood Immunization

Health & Psychology Sierra Leone

Despite significant improvements in access to childhood immunization in Sierra Leone, many children are not fully immunized. Although 94.7 percent of children receive the first vaccination BCG, only 57.5 percent of children receive all basic vaccinations by 12 months age. This study tests if education about externalities and social influence can increase timely vaccination behavior among parents. Researchers implement a randomized field experiment in communities in Northern Sierra Leone. They provide parents with information about the externality effects of vaccinations and vary the way in which the information is presented by making it known whether few or all parents in a community received the information. Findings have potential to influence policy, since knowledge of health externalities may have a significant effect on people’s decision-making. Results forthcoming.

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Health & Psychology

Marcella Alsan Cited at Event on Diversity in Medicine | Stanford Medicine


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