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Short on shots : Are Calls on Cooperative Restraint Effective in Managing the Scarcity of Flu Vaccines?

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Author Info

  • de Janvry, Alain

    ()
    (University of California, Berkeley. Dept of agricultural and resource economics and policy)

  • Sadoulet, Elisabeth

    ()
    (University of California, Berkeley. Dept of agricultural and resource economics and policy)

  • Villas-Boas, Sofia B

    ()
    (University of California, Berkeley. Dept of agricultural and resource economics and policy)

Abstract

We conducted a randomized experiment at the time of the 2004 flu vaccine shortage, providing information about the sharply reduced number of clinics and their schedule, and an appeal on cooperative restraint to a campus population. This strategy was intended to reduce demand for vaccination among non-priority individuals and to free available supplies for the priority population. It failed to achieve its purpose. Information induced a net increase in vaccines distributed and, perversely, the net increase originated entirely in non-priority individuals. The surprising finding is that calls on cooperative restraint induced an uncalled for positive response among priority individuals, while they induced an increase in cheating among non-priority individuals. Age as a qualifying factor was in particular widely abused, with the number of “65 years old†more than twice the predicted value, while about half of the predicted 61-64 years old are missing.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of California at Berkeley, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Policy in its series CUDARE Working Paper Series with number 1013R3.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision: 2008
Handle: RePEc:are:cudare:1013r3

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Related research

Keywords: consumers' demand; experimental methods; medical care; vaccines;

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  1. Ernst Fehr & Simon G�chter, 2000. "Fairness and Retaliation: The Economics of Reciprocity," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 159-181, Summer.
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  3. Matthew Rabin., 1997. "Psychology and Economics," Economics Working Papers 97-251, University of California at Berkeley.
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  7. Esther Duflo & Emmanuel Saez, 2003. "The Role Of Information And Social Interactions In Retirement Plan Decisions: Evidence From A Randomized Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(3), pages 815-842, August.
  8. Esther Dufluo & Emmanuel Saez, 2003. "The role of information and social interactions in retirement plan decisions: Evidence from a randomized experiment," Framed Field Experiments 00141, The Field Experiments Website.
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