IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

An analysis of the pediatric vaccine supply shortage problem


  • Sheldon Jacobson


  • Edward Sewell


  • Ruben Proano



In 2002, several factors resulted in pediatric vaccine manufacturers not being able to produce a sufficient number of vaccines to vaccinate all the children in the United States according to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule. The resulting vaccine supply shortage resulted in thousands of children not being fully immunized according to this schedule, and hence, created an unnecessary risk for epidemic outbreaks of several childhood diseases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention responded to this crisis by using pediatric vaccine stockpiles to mitigate the impact of future shortages. This paper presents a stochastic model that captures the vaccine supply during production interruptions. This model is used to assess the impact of pediatric vaccine stockpile levels on vaccination coverage rates, by considering the probability that all children can be immunized according to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule over a given time period and the expected minimum vaccine supply. The model is also used to assess the proposed pediatric vaccine stockpile levels recommended by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The results of this analysis suggest that the proposed vaccine stockpile levels are adequate to meet future vaccine production interruptions, provided that such production interruptions do not last more than six months (which is not surprising, given that is the time period for which they were designed). However, given that recent vaccine production interruptions have lasted (on average) for over one year, the proposed vaccine stockpile levels are insufficient to meet the nation’s pediatric immunization needs during such time periods, which in turn could lead to localized and/or widespread disease outbreaks. Moreover, a moderate investment in higher vaccine stockpile levels would lead to a significantly reduced risk of such events. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2006

Suggested Citation

  • Sheldon Jacobson & Edward Sewell & Ruben Proano, 2006. "An analysis of the pediatric vaccine supply shortage problem," Health Care Management Science, Springer, vol. 9(4), pages 371-389, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:hcarem:v:9:y:2006:i:4:p:371-389
    DOI: 10.1007/s10729-006-0001-5

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gary D. Eppen & R. Kipp Martin, 1988. "Determining Safety Stock in the Presence of Stochastic Lead Time and Demand," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 34(11), pages 1380-1390, November.
    2. Shmuel S. Oren & Shao Hong Wan, 1986. "Optimal Strategic Petroleum Reserve Policies: A Steady State Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 32(1), pages 14-29, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Shane Hall & Edward Sewell & Sheldon Jacobson, 2008. "Maximizing the effectiveness of a pediatric vaccine formulary while prohibiting extraimmunization," Health Care Management Science, Springer, vol. 11(4), pages 339-352, December.
    2. repec:eee:ejores:v:268:y:2018:i:1:p:174-192 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Duijzer, L.E. & van Jaarsveld, W.L. & Dekker, R., 2017. "Literature Review - the vaccine supply chain," Econometric Institute Research Papers EI2017-01, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus School of Economics (ESE), Econometric Institute.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:hcarem:v:9:y:2006:i:4:p:371-389. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.