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Issue 1067
IAC Express: Weekly immunization news and information

Issue 1067: July 18, 2013

Please Help Give Birth to the End of Hep B!

With this week’s launch of our initiative urging the nation’s birthing institutions to Give birth to the end of Hep B, IAC is asking all of its partners to get involved in promoting the hepatitis B vaccine birth dose.

Experts agree that hepatitis B can be eliminated in the U.S. and that preventing the transmission of the virus at birth is fundamental to this effort.

Yet, despite expert consensus, nearly one in three U.S. newborns leaves the hospital unvaccinated against hepatitis B. As a result, approximately 800 U.S. newborns become chronically infected each year because of perinatal exposure. These newborns would be afforded a “safety net” if a birth dose were universally administered before hospital discharge.

We have created a new website section that provides complete information and resources about the birth dose at www.immunize.org/protect-newborns.

Two New Resources from IAC

In addition to increasing awareness about the need for the hepatitis B birth dose, the initiative offers tools to help birthing institutions adopt or strengthen their birth dose policies.

The centerpiece of this supportive effort is IAC’s new, comprehensive guidebook, Hepatitis B: What Hospitals Need to Do to Protect Newborns. Endorsed by the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the guide contains a wide range of resources to help birthing institutions establish, implement, and optimize their hepatitis B birth dose policies.

Visit www.immunize.org/protect-newborns/guide to view the guidebook’s table of contents and download some or all of its sections.

Complementing the guidebook is our new Hepatitis B Birth Dose Honor Roll, which recognizes birthing institutions that have attained a birth dose coverage rate of 90% or greater and have met specific additional criteria. These criteria help define the important elements of a birth dose policy that are needed to ensure newborns do not fall through the cracks when medical errors occur.

In achieving a 99% coverage rate, Albany Medical Center, Albany, New York, became the first birth dose champion to be inducted into the honor roll at the initiative's July 16 launch event in Albany, New York.

The launch event also included a nationally broadcast webinar with speakers from CDC, IAC, New York State Department of Health, and Albany Medical Center. The 45-minute webinar is available online

For information about the Hepatitis B Birth Dose Honor Roll and how you can apply, visit www.immunize.org/honor-roll/birthdose.

Please Get On Board

August is National Immunization Awareness Month. What better time to join the cause, and help Give birth to the end of Hep B?

Here’s what you can do:
  • Download the guidebook Hepatitis B: What Hospitals Need to Do to Protect Newborns; available at www.immunize.org/protect-newborns/guide;
     
  • Share the guide with hospitals and birthing centers to help them improve birth dose coverage rates;
     
  • Distribute the handout “Give Birth to the End of Hep B” (color version, black/white version), to educate others about the importance of the hepatitis B birth dose;
     
  • Apply for enrollment into the Birth Dose Honor Roll at www.immunize.org/honor-roll/birthdose.
This initiative is a continuing campaign to assist the nation’s more than 3,000 birthing institutions as they adopt and strengthen their hepatitis B birth dose policies.

With your partnership, we will Give birth to the end of Hep B!

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About IAC Express 
We encourage you to reprint any of these Q&As in your own newsletters. Please credit the Immunization Action Coalition and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Please refer to IAC's preferred citation style.
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IAC Express is supported in part by Grant No. U38IP000589 from the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, CDC. Its contents are solely the responsibility of IAC and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC. IAC Express is also supported by educational grants from the following companies: CSL Biotherapies; GlaxoSmithKline; MedImmune, Inc.; Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp.; Novartis Vaccines; Ortho Clinical Diagnostics, Inc.; Pfizer, Inc.; and sanofi pasteur.
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ISSN: 1526-1786

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Protect Newborns
protect newborns
Initiative offers tools to help birthing institutions adopt or strengthen their birth dose policies. Visit today!
Guidebook
Hepatitis B - What Hospitals Need to Do to Protect Newborns
IAC's new 84-page guidebook helps hospitals establish, implement, and optimize their birth dose policies.
Hepatitis B Birth Dose Honor Roll
Hepatitis B Birth Dose Honor Roll
The Hepatitis B Birth Dose Honor Roll recognizes birthing institutions that have attained a birth dose coverage rate of 90% or greater and have met specific additional criteria. Visit today!
Publication Staff
Editor: Deborah L. Wexler, MD
Managing Editor: Dale Thompson, MA
Associate Editor: Teresa Anderson, DDS, MPH
Editorial Assistant: Janelle Tangonan Anderson
Issue Abbreviations
AAFP, American Academy of Family Physicians; AAP, American Academy of Pediatrics; ACIP, Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices; AMA, American Medical Association; CDC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; FDA, Food and Drug Administration; IAC, Immunization Action Coalition; MMWR, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report; NCIRD, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases; NIVS, National Influenza Vaccine Summit; VIS, Vaccine Information Statement; VPD, vaccine-preventable disease; WHO, World Health Organization.
 
This page was reviewed on July 18, 2013
 
Immunization Action Coalition  •  Saint Paul, MN
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This website is supported in part by a cooperative agreement from the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (Grant No. 5U38IP000290) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, GA. The website content is the sole responsibility of IAC and does not necessarily represent the official views of CDC.