In some areas of the world it is believed that Santa Claus brings presents to children on Christmas Eve. While it is unclear whether only good boys and girls receive presents, it is reported that more than 90% of children are visited by Santa Claus at Christmas.1 It is possible that he could spread pathogens if infected with a communicable disease at the time of his yearly visit. In this study, we used mathematical modelling to investigate the probability and impact of influenza and measles transmission by Santa Claus on Christmas Eve.
- 1. Park JJ, Coumbe BGT, Park EHG, et al. Dispelling the nice or naughty myth: Retrospective observational study of Santa Claus. BMJ 2016; 355: i6355.
- 2. Paget J, Marquet R, Meijer A, van der Velden K. Influenza activity in Europe during eight seasons (1999–2007): an evaluation of the indicators used to measure activity and an assessment of the timing, length and course of peak activity (spread) across Europe. BMC Infect Dis 2007; 7: 141.
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