Immunisation Horizon Scanning Bulletin Volume 2 Issue 3

April 8, 2010
Advertisements

Cervical cancer: problem solved? Vaccinating girls against human papillomavirus

April 6, 2010

Source: BJOG, 2010 Jan; 117 (2): 137-42

Follow this link for abstract

Year of publication: January 2010

Publication Type: Commentary

In a nutshell: September 2008 marked the beginning of a nationwide immunisation programme designed to protect British women against the devastating impact of cervical cancer. Cervarix™, a GlaxoSmithKline vaccine (Brentford, London, UK), offers protection against human papillomavirus (HPV) types 16 and 18, which together are responsible for approximately 70% of cervical cancers. In future, girls aged 12–13 years will be immunised each year as part of the routine National Health Service immunisation programme. In addition, all girls aged 13–18 years are being offered the vaccine in a one-off ‘catch-up’ programme. This will ensure that by 2011 the 12–18-years cohort will all have been invited for free HPV vaccination.

Length of publication: 6 page article


Influenza vaccines provide diminished protection but are cost-saving in older adults

April 6, 2010

Source: Journal of Internal Medicine, 2010 Feb; 267 (2): 220-227

Follow this link for abstract

Year of publication: February 2010

Publication Type: Journal Article

In a nutshell: Influenza is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality in adults aged over 65 years. Although vaccination remains the most effective method of preventing influenza and its sequellae, current vaccination strategies provide less protection to older adults than to younger persons. Influenza vaccination in community-dwelling older adults is cost-effective, though there is room for improvement. Newer vaccine strategies considered for use in older adults include alternate routes of administration (intradermal or intranasal), addition of adjuvant, and novel methods of antigen presentation. Measuring cell-mediated immune response to new vaccines in addition to antibody response may correlate better with vaccine efficacy in this population. Whilst pandemic influenza A/H1N1 2009 (pH1N1) has largely spared older adults, the impact of pH1N1 vaccination has yet to be determined.

Length of publication: 7 page article


Swine ‘Flu vaccine available for the protection of travellers

April 6, 2010

Source: Department of Health

Follow this link for full-text

Year of publication: March 2010

Publication Type: Press Release

In a nutshell: People travelling to the Southern Hemisphere, including the World Cup in South Africa, should be vaccinated against swine ‘flu to prevent them from catching the virus, and from bringing it back. The Southern Hemisphere ‘flu season is expected to start shortly and vaccination will reduce the risk to travellers.

Length of publication: 1 page press release


Out of hours services would need to expand in more severe flu pandemic

March 26, 2010

Source: BMJ News

Follow this link for abstract

Year of publication: March 2010

Publication Type: News-Item

In a nutshell: A lack of capacity in out of hours services means that GPs in England would struggle to cope if a more severe wave of pandemic flu were to occur, speakers said at a pandemic summit at the Royal College of General Practitioners in London on 18 March. The number of patients contacting out of hours services in Tower Hamlets in London in July 2009 at the height of the H1N1 swine flu pandemic was more than double the number in the previous year. On one day 200 people were waiting to be called back by an out of hours GP. Meanwhile in Liverpool and Knowlsley the volume of calls to out of hours providers rose by 150% during one week in July. Resources were being stretched by the need for home visits, said Simon Abrams, a GP and medical director of Urgent Health UK, an umbrella group of providers of . . .

Length of publication: 1 page news-item


Why don’t we vaccinate against chickenpox?

March 26, 2010

Source: BBC News

Follow this link for full-text

Year of publication: March 2010

Publication Type: News-Item

In a nutshell: It is peak season for chickenpox – the highly-contagious, blistering virus which for most children is unpleasant and for a very few lethal. A safe and effective vaccine is available – why don’t we use it? The varicella vaccine is available privately, but the UK’s immunisation body decided last year against universal vaccination of children – as carried out in many developed countries – citing cost and the fear it could increase shingles, a reactivation of the virus, in older people.

Length of publication: 1 page news-item


Throat cancer surge prompts HPV jabs for boys rethink

March 26, 2010

Source: Health Care Republic

Follow this link for full-text

Year of publication: March 2010

Publication Type: News-Item

In a nutshell: Growing incidence of HPV-related throat cancer may make vaccinations for boys cost effective, researchers say. Previous calls for boys to receive HPV vaccinations were rejected after it surpassed the upper threshold of NICE’s cost-effectiveness benchmark – cost per ‘quality adjusted life year’ (QALY). However, the UK has seen a 51% rise in incidence of oral and oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma in men, rising from seven per 100,000 to 11 per 100,000 between 1989 and 2006. Researchers said this recent surge may alter the cost effectiveness argument and mean vaccination programmes for boys might be justified on health economic basis.

Length of publication: 1 page news-item