BMC Public Health
(Accessed 25 October 2014)
Herpes zoster vaccine (HZV): utilization and coverage 2009 – 2013, Alberta, Canada
Xianfang C Liu, Kimberley A Simmonds, Margaret L Russell and Lawrence W Svenson
BMC Public Health 2014, 14:1098 doi:10.1186/1471-2458-14-1098
Published: 23 October 2014
Herpes zoster vaccine (HZV) is not publicly funded in the province of Alberta, Canada. We estimated vaccine coverage among those aged 60 years or older for 2013, as well as vaccine utilization rates per hundred thousand population over the period 2009 – 2013. We explored for factors associated with HZV dispensing rates.
We used administrative data from the Alberta Pharmaceutical Information Network (PIN) database to identify unique persons for whom HZV had been dispensed from community pharmacies over 2009 – 2013. PIN data were also used to estimate the pharmacy/population ratios for rural and urban Alberta over the period. Denominators for rates were estimated using mid-year population estimates from the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan Registry. Income quintile data were estimated from the 2006 Census of Canada. Crude, age, sex, geographic (rural vs. urban), income-quintile and year specific rates of HZV vaccine dispensing were estimated per 100,000 population. Rates were adjusted for pharmacy/population ratio. Vaccine coverage for persons aged 60 years or older was estimated using counts of all unique persons for whom the vaccine was dispensed over the period in the numerator and a 2013 mid- year population denominator.
HZV dispensing rates rose annually from 2009 – 2013. Vaccine coverage was estimated to be 8.4% among persons aged 60 years or older. Rates of dispensing were highest for persons aged 60-69 years and were higher for females than males and for persons from higher compared to lower income quintiles. Dispensing rates were lower for rural than for urban residents. About 2% of vaccine was dispensed for persons aged less than 50 years.