ECON203 Microeconomic Analysis (Session 2, 2019)
Application assessment 3
Vaccination and access to payments and facilities
From January 1 2018, the NSW government has restricted access to child-care to children who are fully immunized, and has made it unlawful for principals of child-care centres to ignore these restrictions:
From July 1, 2018 the Australian government through its ‘No Jab, No Pay’ initiative has made eligibility to the full value of Family Tax Benefit Part A dependent on all children in the family being fully immunized:
How do mandatory charges and exclusions affect the decision whether or not to vaccinate? How might it affect public health outcomes? How might this issue be represented in game-theoretic terms? Considering the costs and benefits, are these approaches likely to be an efficient policy move in public health terms?
On the ethical side, what are the consequentialist and deontological cases for or against policies designed to increase the cost of non-vaccination for parents? Are these measures ethically justified? Are the economic aspects and the ethical aspects in conflict? If so, can they be reconciled?
[N.B. In considering the arguments for and against it is necessary to remain within the realm of the factual. The scientific evidence regarding the safety of vaccines is complete and overwhelming, and so-called anti-vaxx ‘evidence’ has routinely been found to be at worst falsified, and at best the product of shoddy or incompetent research design. Whatever beliefs are involved in non-vaccination decisions are to be treated as just that (beliefs) and not some kind of credible alternative knowledge.]