Update on childhood pneumococcal vaccination
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Since the efficacy of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) against invasive pneumococcal disease in young children was first demonstrated in clinical trials in California, USA, in the late 1990s, it has been studied in more diverse populations and introduced into infant vaccination programs in the USA, Australia, Canada and several European countries. This review briefly describes the epidemiology of pneumococcal disease, recent literature on PCV trials in various study populations, the impact of 7-valent PCV infant vaccination on the epidemiology of invasive pneumococcal disease, with special reference to indirect effects in older age groups and the emergence of serotype replacement disease. Variations in vaccine administration schedules, effects on noninvasive pneumococcal diseases, and the use of the polysaccharide pneumococcal vaccine or future formulations of pneumococcal conjugate vaccines from the perspective of policy decisions for population-wide childhood pneumococcal vaccination programs are also highlighted.
Specialist Studies in Education not elsewhere classified