Statement of Task (Part II): Identify potential research approaches, methodologies, and study designs that could inform this question, including an assessment of the potential strengths and limitations of each approach, methodology, and design, as well as the financial and ethical feasibility of doing them.

Summary of Methodological Issues

The committee’s findings and conclusions about research approaches are presented in Chapter 6. The committee parsed the phrase “this question” in Part 2 of the statement of task into four broad research questions in Box 7-1.

The committee then discussed general research approaches with the potential to answer these questions: ongoing research with data from existing data systems, research with enhanced data from existing data systems, prospective observational studies, and randomized controlled trials. The committee also recognized that to advance the knowledge about the safety

BOX 7-1
Leading Research Questions of Interest to Select Stakeholders

  1. How do child health outcomes compare between those who receive no vaccinations and those who receive the full currently recommended immunization schedule?
  2. How do child health outcomes compare between (a) those who receive the full currently recommended immunization schedule and (b) those who omit specific vaccines?
  3. For children who receive the currently recommended immunization schedule, do short- or long-term health outcomes differ for those who receive fewer immunizations per visit (e.g., when immunizations are spread out over multiple occasions), or for those who receive their immunizations at later ages but still within the recommended ranges?
  4. Do potentially susceptible subpopulations—for example, children from families with a history of allergies or autoimmune diseases— who may experience adverse health consequences in association with immunization with the currently recommended immunization schedule exist?


The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement