Flu Shot Learning: Predict H1N1 and Seasonal Flu Vaccines

Can you predict whether people got H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccines using information they shared about their backgrounds, opinions, and health behaviors? #health

beginner practice
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Can you predict whether people got H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccines using information they shared about their backgrounds, opinions, and health behaviors?

In this challenge, we will take a look at vaccination, a key public health measure used to fight infectious diseases. Vaccines provide immunization for individuals, and enough immunization in a community can further reduce the spread of diseases through "herd immunity."

As of the launch of this competition, vaccines for the COVID-19 virus are still under development and not yet available. The competition will instead revisit the public health response to a different recent major respiratory disease pandemic. Beginning in spring 2009, a pandemic caused by the H1N1 influenza virus, colloquially named "swine flu," swept across the world. Researchers estimate that in the first year, it was responsible for between 151,000 to 575,000 deaths globally.

A vaccine for the H1N1 flu virus became publicly available in October 2009. In late 2009 and early 2010, the United States conducted the National 2009 H1N1 Flu Survey. This phone survey asked respondents whether they had received the H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccines, in conjunction with questions about themselves. These additional questions covered their social, economic, and demographic background, opinions on risks of illness and vaccine effectiveness, and behaviors towards mitigating transmission. A better understanding of how these characteristics are associated with personal vaccination patterns can provide guidance for future public health efforts.

This is a practice competition designed to be accessible to participants at all levels. That makes it a great place to dive into the world of data science competitions. Come on in from the waiting room and try your (hopefully steady) hand at predicting vaccinations.

Competition End Date:

July 30, 2025, midnight UTC

This competition is for learning and exploring, so the deadline may be extended in the future.

How to compete

  1. Click the "Join the competition" button on the sidebar to enroll in the competition.
  2. Get familiar with the problem on the Problem Description and About page.
  3. Download the data from the Data tab.
  4. Create and train your own model. The benchmark blog post is a great place to start!
  5. Use your model to generate predictions that match the submission format. Click “Submit” in the sidebar, and then “Make new submission”. You’re in!
  6. Bonus: share your work! Click the "+" icon on the Submissions page and add a link to your approach.

Data is provided courtesy of the United States National Center for Health Statistics.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). National Center for Health Statistics. The National 2009 H1N1 Flu Survey. Hyattsville, MD: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012.

Images courtesy of the U.S. Navy and the Fort Meade Public Affairs Office via Flickr under the CC BY 2.0 license.