Date of Conferral
Doctor of Public Health (DrPH)
Although pertussis vaccines have been available for over 7 decades, countries are experiencing a pertussis resurgence. This study sought to establish a relationship between the European pertussis immunization schedule designs (with and without the inclusion of adolescent boosters) and the immunization requirement (recommended or required), which potentially influences immunity waning, and thus the incidence rate and epidemiologic cycles of pertussis. The theoretical foundation for this study was the theory of herd immunity. A quantitative research method was used, supported by a secondary data source. The statistical analysis included the use of linear regression to evaluate the relationship between the requirement of the vaccine and the addition of adolescent boosters on the incidence level and the length of the epidemiologic cycles. The study findings suggest that pertussis immunization, whether recommended or required, does have an influence on the incidence rate within the populations of the countries analyzed. The same influence on incidence was demonstrated in relation to adolescent boosters as part of the immunization schedule. A similar relationship was not observed between the immunization schedule requirement and design on the epidemiologic cycles. This study provided relevant data that contributes to the enhanced understanding of the relationship between the design of the immunization schedule on incidence. This understanding could help control the resurgence, reduce immune waning through adolescent boosters, enhance immunization schedule timing, and lower the incidence. The result would be a positive public health social change through improved immunization strategy.