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Immunization Action Coalition
IAC Express 2007
Issue number 692: November 12, 2007
 
Contents of this Issue
Select a title to jump to the article.
  1. Nation's supply of influenza vaccine at record high; CDC urges broad and continued immunization into spring 2008
  2. "Read immediately" issue of Immunization Works asks that you share your plans for National Influenza Vaccination Week
  3. New: CDC adds public service announcements to its materials for National Influenza Vaccination Week
  4. Important: Be sure to administer influenza vaccine throughout the influenza season--from fall 2007 through spring 2008
  5. New: Merck reports unavailability of PedvaxHIB vaccine; CDC website posts letter regarding status of Hib vaccine supply
  6. November 8 issue of IAC's Hep Express electronic newsletter now online
  7. New: IAC's Declination of Influenza Vaccination form now available in Spanish
  8. VIS for injectable influenza vaccine now available in Haitian Creole and Portuguese
  9. CIIC makes two resources available online--its report on childhood influenza immunization and its influenza bulletin
  10. New: 2007-08 adult immunization schedule now available for Palm and Pocket PC handhelds
  11. MMWR reports on syringe exchange programs
 
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.
  
Issue 692: November 12, 2007
1.  Nation's supply of influenza vaccine at record high; CDC urges broad and continued immunization into spring 2008

On November 9, CDC issued a press release about the national supply of influenza vaccine projected for the 2007-08 influenza season and about the need for healthcare providers to vaccinate broadly throughout the entire season. The press release is reprinted below in its entirety.


NATION'S INFLUENZA VACCINE SUPPLIES CONTINUE TO INCREASE; CDC ADVISES BROADENING OF VACCINATION EFFORTS

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced today that the nation's influenza vaccine manufacturers report that more than 103 million doses of influenza (flu) vaccine have been distributed as of November 2--an amount that represents more doses than had ever previously been distributed at this date.

"This is good news. Influenza vaccine appears to be more widely available than ever before, and we want people who should be receiving an annual flu vaccination to be sure that they do," said Dr. Jeanne Santoli, deputy director of CDC's Immunization Services Division. "Thanks to the increased production of flu vaccine, more people than ever can get protection from a potentially very serious disease. We are hopeful that this year a record number of people will get vaccinated."

CDC officials believe that most influenza vaccine providers currently have supplies sufficient for meeting demand. As many as 132 million total doses of vaccine could be produced by the end of the 2007-2008 flu seasons, according to manufacturers. This record amount would be about 12 million more doses than were produced during the 2006-2007 season. During the 2006-2007 season, manufacturers distributed 102.5 million doses to providers. CDC officials have worked closely with flu vaccine manufacturers, distributors, and the Food and Drug Administration to ensure improved flu vaccine availability.

Santoli noted that some healthcare providers may not have received their complete order of vaccine yet, as CDC has encouraged vaccine manufacturers and major distributors to use partial vaccine shipments to get doses to as many providers as possible at the earliest opportunity. Flu vaccine distribution typically continues through December and early January.

The 2007-2008 influenza season is just beginning, and nationwide, influenza activity is currently very low. So far, only two states are reporting local influenza activity. In the United States, influenza activity can begin as early as October and continues through May. Each year, on average, from five to 20 percent of the U.S. population is infected with influenza, with influenza estimated to result in 36,000 deaths and more than 200,000 hospitalizations from flu-related complications in a typical year.

Santoli noted that almost 75 percent of Americans are recommended to be vaccinated, and that healthcare providers and people at higher risk for influenza-related medical complications should especially make getting a flu vaccination a high priority. While anyone can get influenza, the flu can be particularly dangerous for certain groups of people who are at greater risk of developing serious flu-related complications, such as pneumonia. Groups at higher risk of flu-related complications include infants and young children, pregnant women, children and adults with chronic medical conditions like asthma, diabetes, or heart disease, and people 65 years old and older.

In addition, close contacts of high risk persons, such as other household members, caregivers, and healthcare personnel should also get vaccinated in order to protect their loved ones or those they care for. Vaccination of those who live with or care for infants is particularly important because children less than six months of age should not get a flu vaccine. Vaccination is also encouraged for anyone who wants to decrease his or her risk of getting the flu.

Since the onset, duration, and severity of flu season is unpredictable, and different types and strains of influenza circulate throughout the flu season, CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends that influenza vaccine be offered as long as influenza viruses are continuing to circulate in the community.

For more information about influenza and influenza vaccine visit http://www.cdc.gov/flu

To access the press release, go to:
http://www.cdc.gov/od/oc/media/pressrel/2007/r071109.htm

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2 "Read immediately" issue of Immunization Works asks that you share your plans for National Influenza Vaccination Week

On November 7, NCIRD published a special "read immediately" issue of its electronic newsletter, Immunization Works. The special November 7 issue contains information about National Influenza Vaccination Week, which takes place November 26-December 2. The issue is reprinted below in its entirety.


NATIONAL INFLUENZA VACCINATION WEEK (NIVW) IS NOVEMBER 26-DECEMBER 2, 2007
Send Us Your Plans and See What Others are Doing!

As part of our continuous effort to promote timely flu vaccination, CDC is pleased to announce the second annual National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW), taking place November 26 to December 2, 2007. NIVW serves to remind people who have not yet been vaccinated that the time to get a flu vaccine continues into winter--through January or later, when the influenza season typically peaks. Throughout the week, we will be highlighting the importance of influenza vaccination for those people at high risk, their close contacts, and all those who want to be protected against influenza. CDC, Families Fighting Flu, and other partners also have set aside Tuesday, November 27, as Children's Flu Vaccination Day, with a focus on vaccinating high-risk children and their close contacts.

Begun in 2006, NIVW is a joint effort of the United States Department of Health and Human Services and CDC, the National Influenza Vaccine Summit, and other immunization partners. Local health departments, public health partners, and providers are encouraged to enhance vaccine availability by scheduling additional clinics, extending clinic hours, and facilitating mass vaccination in retail and other locations during NIVW and through the remainder of the influenza season.

Participating in NIVW:

The rest of our newly revised, easy-to-navigate flu website (www.cdc.gov/flu) offers a variety of other flu-related e-tools and information for professionals and patients alike. We hope you will find them useful for your efforts during NIVW and beyond.

For more information, visit www.cdc.gov/flu, or call CDC at (800) CDC-INFO [(800) 232-4636] (English and Spanish) or (888) 232-6348 (TTY).

To access the November 7 issue of Immunization Works, click here.

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3 New: CDC adds public service announcements to its materials for National Influenza Vaccination Week

CDC recently added video and audio public service announcements (PSAs) to the materials it has developed for National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW). Some are available in Spanish as well as English; scripts are available for all. Details follow.

VIDEO PSAs

  • "National Influenza Vaccination Week," featuring Julie L. Gerberding, MD, director, CDC. (English, video, audio)
  • "Grandkids" (English, video, audio)
  • "Stop" (English, Spanish, video)
  • "Hazlo por ellos" (Spanish, video, audio)
  • "Don't Let the Flu Ruin Your Holidays" (English, audio)
  • "Cold" (English, audio)
  • "Advice" (English, audio)

To access the PSAs, go to: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/nivw/psa/index.htm and click on the pertinent link.

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4 Important: Be sure to administer influenza vaccine throughout the influenza season--from fall 2007 through spring 2008

Influenza vaccination should continue from now into the early months of 2008. Visit the following websites often to find the information you need to keep vaccinating. Both are continually updated with the latest resources.

The National Influenza Vaccine Summit website at http://www.preventinfluenza.org

CDC's Seasonal Flu web section at http://www.cdc.gov/flu

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5 New: Merck reports unavailability of PedvaxHIB vaccine; CDC website posts letter regarding status of Hib vaccine supply

On November 7, CDC announced that Merck & Co. reported that its PedvaxHIB vaccine is unavailable for shipment, pending resolution of a manufacturing issue. The announcement is reprinted below.

Also on November 7, the CDC website was updated with a link to a letter regarding the current supply status of various vaccines that protect against Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib). The link is given at the end of this IAC Express article.


Merck & Co., Inc. has reported that PedvaxHIB is unavailable for shipment. Based on the latest information, Merck expects PedvaxHIB (PRP-OMP) to be available sometime in the first quarter of 2008. Merck reports that the exact timing is dependent upon resolution of a manufacturing issue.


To access the announcement about PedvaxHIB, go to: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vac-gen/shortages/default.htm Scroll down to Note 1.

To access the letter about the status of the Hib vaccine supply, click here.

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6 November 8 issue of IAC's Hep Express electronic newsletter now online

The November 8 issue of Hep Express, an electronic newsletter published by IAC, is now available online. It is intended for health professionals, program planners, and advocates involved in prevention, screening, and treatment of viral hepatitis.

IAC Express has already covered some of the information presented in the November 8 Hep Express; titles of articles we have not yet covered follow.

  • IAC updates and adds information to its hepatitis prevention programs website
  • CDC offers podcast on healthy travel for international adoptions
  • Journal articles you may have missed

To access the November 8 issue, go to:
http://www.hepprograms.org/hepexpress/issue64.asp

To sign up for a free subscription to Hep Express, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/subscribe

To access previous issues of Hep Express, go to:
http://www.hepprograms.org/hepexpress

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7 New: IAC's Declination of Influenza Vaccination form now available in Spanish

IAC's one-page form "Declination of Influenza Vaccination" is now available in Spanish. IAC gratefully acknowledges Betmar Languages of Minneapolis for the translation.

The form is intended for the use of healthcare employers who recommend that their employees receive annual influenza vaccination. It succinctly states reasons for vaccinating healthcare workers against the disease and provides space for the employee's signature if the employee declines vaccination.

To access a ready-to-print (PDF) version of "Declination of Influenza Vaccination" in Spanish, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p4068-01.pdf

To access "Declination of Influenza Vaccination" in English, go to: http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p4068.pdf

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8 VIS for injectable influenza vaccine now available in Haitian Creole and Portuguese

Dated 7/16/07, the current version of the VIS for trivalent inactivated influenza (TIV; injectable) vaccine is now available on the IAC website in Haitian Creole and Portuguese. IAC gratefully acknowledges the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for the translations.

To obtain a ready-to-print (PDF) version of the VIS for TIV vaccine in Haitian Creole, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/vis/ha_flu06.pdf

To obtain the VIS for TIV vaccine in Portuguese, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/vis/pr_flu06.pdf

To obtain the VIS for TIV in English, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/vis/2flu.pdf

For information about the use of VISs, and for VISs in more than 30 languages, visit IAC's VIS web section at http://www.immunize.org/vis

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9 CIIC makes two resources available online--its report on childhood influenza immunization and its influenza bulletin

The website of the Childhood Influenza Immunization Coalition (CIIC) recently posted its six-page report, "Improving Childhood Influenza Immunization Rates to Protect Our Nation's Children." The report discusses the status of childhood influenza immunization and strategies to increase the immunization rate.

To access the report, go to:
http://www.preventchildhoodinfluenza.org/resource/NFID_CIIC_Report.pdf

CIIC also recently published the first issue of its electronic newsletter, Influenza Bulletin. The issue outlines the organization's communications and educational initiatives for the 2007-08 influenza season.

To access the issue, go to:
http://www.preventchildhoodinfluenza.org/member/bulletin

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10.  New: 2007-08 adult immunization schedule now available for Palm and Pocket PC handhelds

The Group on Immunization Education of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine recently announced that it has updated its "Shots 2007" software to reflect the Adult Immunization Schedule for 2007-08. The software can be downloaded for FREE to Palm-OS and Pocket-PCs handhelds. "Shots 2007 Online" software is also available.

To access "Shots 2007" for Palm-OS handhelds and Pocket-PCs handhelds, as well as "Shots 2007 Online," click here.

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11.  MMWR reports on syringe exchange programs

[The following is cross posted from the Immunization Action Coalition's Hep Express electronic newsletter, 11/8/07.]

CDC published "Syringe Exchange Programs--United States, 2005" in the November 9 issue of MMWR. The first paragraph of the article is reprinted below, excluding references.


Syringe exchange programs (SEPs) provide free sterile syringes in exchange for used syringes to reduce transmission of bloodborne pathogens among injection-drug users (IDUs). SEPs in the United States began as a way to prevent the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other bloodborne infections such as hepatitis B and hepatitis C. The National Institute on Drug Abuse recommends that persons who continue to inject drugs use a new, sterile syringe for each injection. Monitoring syringe exchange activity is an important part of assessing HIV prevention measures in the United States. As of November 2007, a total of 185 SEPs were operating in 36 states, the District of Columbia (DC), and Puerto Rico. This report summarizes a survey of SEP activities in the United States during 2005 and compares the findings with previous SEP surveys. The findings indicated an increase in overall funding for SEPs, including an increase in public funding, and a stabilization in both the number of SEPs operating and the number of syringes exchanged since 2004. This report also documents an expansion of services offered by SEPs, a trend that resulted from an increase in state and local funding. These expanded services are helping protect IDUs and their communities from the spread of bloodborne pathogens and are providing access to health services for a population at high risk. Monitoring of syringe exchange activity should continue . . . .


To access a web-text (HTML) version of the complete MMWR article, go to:
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5644a4.htm

To access a ready-to-print (PDF) version of this issue of MMWR, go to: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/PDF/wk/mm5644.pdf

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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.