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Every year, Ontario health units enforce the Immunization of School Pupils Act to maintain high coverage rates. Enforcement activities are resource intense and burdensome for parents. Ontario's new Immunization Connect Ontario (ICON) makes vaccine reporting easier for students and families and more efficient for public health units.
Toronto Public Health partnered with Ontario's Behavioural Insights Unit to encourage parents to report their child’s vaccinations online. Using behavioural science principles, we tested various notifications to identify which messaging is most effective in encouraging people to use ICON to report their vaccinations in a timely fashion. The results of a prospective randomized evaluation indicated that behaviourally informed messaging was highly effective, tripling the likelihood of individuals reporting vaccinations online, at no extra cost and with no effect on suspension or exemption rates. This session will examine the significant impact of applied behavioral science within the context of vaccine reporting.
By the end of this session, participants will be able to:
- Define the methodology of applied behavioural insights, including common behavioural design principles;
- Recall a case study that successfully motivated behaviour change in a public health context;
- Describe the impact of applying behavioural science to the context of vaccine reporting.
Presenters: Karen Beckerman, Brianne Kirkpatrick and Julian House
Karen Beckermann is an Associate Director at Toronto Public Health in the Vaccine Preventable Diseases program. Her previous public health experience includes organizational planning and performance.
Brianne Kirkpatrick is the Manager of Ontario’s Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU). A former management consultant, Brianne helped build the behavioural insights practice at her previous firm before joining the Ontario Public Service.
Julian House is a Scientist with the BIU. He is a research fellow and teaches behavioural economics and marketing at the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies or views of Public Health Ontario, nor does the mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by Public Health Ontario.
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