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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2014, Article ID 702973, 7 pages
Research Article

Optimal Vaccine Distribution Strategy for Different Age Groups of Population: A Differential Evolution Algorithm Approach

1Guangdong Key Laboratory of Health Informatics, Health Information Research Center, School of Public Health, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510080, China
2Key Laboratory of Machine Intelligence and Advanced Computing of Ministry of Education of China, Engineering Research Center of Supercomputing Engineering Software of Ministry of Education of China, School of Advanced Computing, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510006, China
3Department of Respiratory Medicine, First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510080, China

Received 19 May 2014; Accepted 29 July 2014; Published 27 August 2014

Academic Editor: Hailin Liu

Copyright © 2014 Xiao-Min Hu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Vaccination is one of the effective ways for protecting susceptible individuals from infectious diseases. Different age groups of population have different vulnerability to the disease and different contact frequencies. In order to achieve the maximum effects, the distribution of vaccine doses to the groups of individuals needs to be optimized. In this paper, a differential evolution (DE) algorithm is proposed to address the problem. The performance of the proposed algorithm has been tested by a classical infectious disease transmission model and a series of simulations have been made. The results show that the proposed algorithm can always obtain the best vaccine distribution strategy which can minimize the number of infectious individuals during the epidemic outbreak. Furthermore, the effects of vaccination on different days and the vaccine coverage percentages have also been discussed.