Rotavirus seasonality and vaccination: England and Wales

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<strong>Volume 28, Issue 18, Pages 3071-3264 (19 April 2010)</strong>

<strong><em>Regular Papers</em></strong>
<strong>Modelling the seasonality of rotavirus disease and the impact of vaccination in England and Wales</strong>
Pages 3118-3126
Christina Atchison, Ben Lopman, William John Edmunds

Two rotavirus vaccines are currently recommended for inclusion in routine childhood immunization programmes. We developed a deterministic age-structured model of rotavirus transmission and disease to investigate the population-level effects of vaccination in England and Wales. The model explicitly captures the natural history of infection and uses realistic population mixing patterns. The model accurately reproduces the strong seasonal pattern and age distribution of rotavirus disease observed in England and Wales. We predict vaccination will provide both direct and indirect protection within the population. If coverage levels comparable to other childhood vaccines are achieved, we predict that vaccination will reduce rotavirus disease incidence by 61% resulting in a potential fall in burden on health-care services.

Criteria for inclusion of vaccinations in public programmes

<strong>Volume 28, Issue 17, Pages 2917-3070 (9 April 2010)</strong>
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<strong><em>Regular Papers</em></strong>
<strong>Criteria for inclusion of vaccinations in public programmes</strong>
Pages 2924-2931
Hans Houweling, Marcel Verweij, E. Joost Ruitenberg and on behalf of the National Immunisation Programme Review Committee of the Health Council of the Netherlands

As more and more new vaccines are developed and brought to the market, governments have to make decisions about which vaccinations to include in public programmes. This paper describes the experience in the Netherlands in developing a framework for assessing whether a vaccination should be included in the National Immunization Programme (NIP). Bearing in mind the public nature, the factors that determine a vaccine’s suitability for inclusion in a communal vaccination programme have been translated into seven selection criteria, grouped under five thematic headings: seriousness and extent of the disease burden, effectiveness and safety of the vaccination, acceptability of the vaccination, efficiency of the vaccination, and priority of the vaccination. The seven criteria and the explanation of them provide a framework for the systematic examination of arguments for and against the inclusion and prioritisation of particular vaccinations. As an illustration, the vaccinations currently provided in the Netherlands through public programmes as well as 23 ‘candidate’ vaccinations are assessed against the seven criteria. The proposed assessment framework including the selection criteria can take full account of the values and specificities as they may differ between situations and countries; the transparency of the approach may help to clarify which elements of the assessment are pivotal in specific situations. Using the criteria furthers a trustworthy, transparent and accountable process of decision-making about inclusion of new vaccinations in public vaccination programmes and may help to retain public confidence.

Anit-vaccination campaigns: common features

<strong>Volume 28, Issue 17, Pages 2917-3070 (9 April 2010)</strong>

<strong>“All manner of ills”: The features of serious diseases attributed to vaccination</strong>
Pages 3066-3070
Julie Leask, Simon Chapman, Spring Chenoa Cooper Robbins

Anti-vaccination writings have linked vaccines with a wide range of negative outcomes. The majority of evidence negates such connections raising the question of what makes these attributions attractive. This research identified diseases and conditions which are claimed to have been caused by vaccines and identified their shared societal features. They shared an idiopathic origin; apparent rise in incidence; face-value biological plausibility of a link to vaccines; dreaded outcomes; and their onset having close proximity to immunisation. Any attempt to re-frame erroneous claims about vaccination first requires an identification of the deeper anxieties in which they are located.

TPPs: helping vaccines overcome post-approval obstacles

Volume 28, Issue 16, Pages 2799-2916 (1 April 2010)</strong>

<strong><em>Short Communication</em></strong>
<strong>Constructing target product profiles (TPPs) to help vaccines overcome post-approval obstacles</strong>
Pages 2806-2809
Bruce Y. Lee, Donald S. Burke

As history has demonstrated, post-approval obstacles can impede a vaccine’s use and potentially lead to its withdrawal. Addressing these potential obstacles when changes in a vaccine’s technology can still be easily made may improve a vaccine’s chances of success. Augmented vaccine target product profiles (TPPs) can help vaccine scientists better understand and anticipate these obstacles and galvanize conversations among various vaccine stakeholders (e.g., scientists, marketers, business development managers, policy makers, public health officials, health care workers, third party payors, etc.) earlier in a vaccine’s development.

Economics in vaccine expert reviews

<strong>Volume 28, Issue 16, Pages 2799-2916 (1 April 2010)</strong>

<strong>Regular Papers</strong>
<strong>A comparison of the use of economics in vaccine expert reviews</strong>
Pages 2841-2845
Philip Jacobs, Arto Ohinmaa

We reviewed how health economics has been included in the vaccine expert review processes in a sample of countries. We identified two kinds of review processes – those in which vaccines and drugs are assessed using a common process, and those in which vaccines are assessed within the infectious disease framework. In either process, the countries recommend that their national pharmaco-economic (i.e., guidelines developed for drugs) guidelines be used to conduct the studies, although the guidelines themselves differ between countries. As a result of these factors, the decision process and the study outcomes can differ between countries, but because the vaccine adoption process includes other criteria as well, economic factors will not necessarily alter the outcome.

WHO: Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 – update 92: Weekly update 19 March 2010

The WHO continues to issue weekly “updates” and briefing notes on the H1N1 pandemic at:
Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 – update 92
Weekly update
19 March 2010

As of 14 March 2010, worldwide more than 213 countries and overseas territories or communities have reported laboratory confirmed cases of pandemic influenza H1N1 2009, including at least 16813 deaths.
WHO is actively monitoring the progress of the pandemic through frequent consultations with the WHO Regional Offices and member states and through monitoring of multiple sources of information.
Situation update:
The most active areas of pandemic influenza transmission continue to be in Southeast Asia and West Africa. Limited data suggests that pandemic influenza activity may be increasing across parts of Central America and the Caribbean. Low levels of pandemic influenza virus continue to circulate across southern and south-eastern Europe and in East, West, and South Asia. Although pandemic influenza virus continues to be the predominant influenza virus circulating worldwide, seasonal influenza B viruses are predominate in East Asia, and have been detected at low levels across southeast Asia and eastern Africa….

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