Immunization Action Coalition and the Hepatitis B Coalition

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Issue Number 182            August 18, 2000

CONTENTS OF THIS ISSUE

  1. CDC publishes a Public Health Dispatch on varicella outbreaks among Mexican adults in Alabama
  2. CDC's Immunization Update 2000 satellite broadcast set for September 14, 2000
  3. Workshop on Management of Hepatitis B: 2000 to be held September 8-10, 2000, at the National Institutes of Health
  4. CDC publishes notice of a Workshop on Vaccine Communication to be held October 5-6, 2000, in Arlington, Va.
  5. Evaluation of New Vaccines workshop to be held November 14-15, 2000, in Bethesda, Md.

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(1)
August 18, 2000
CDC PUBLISHES A PUBLIC HEALTH DISPATCH ON VARICELLA OUTBREAKS AMONG MEXICAN ADULTS IN ALABAMA

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a Public Health Dispatch titled "Varicella Outbreak Among Mexican Adults--Alabama, 2000" in the August 18, 2000, issue of the MMWR. The article is reprinted below:

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Varicella Outbreaks Among Mexican Adults--Alabama, 2000

On May 19, 2000, a physician in southern Alabama reported seven cases of varicella to the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH). All the cases were in previously healthy young adults living in an apartment complex in town A and working in a poultry processing plant in nearby town B. On May 24, ADPH invited CDC to assist in outbreak investigation and control. This report summarizes the investigation.

Investigators identified 18 varicella cases among persons with illness onset during April 1-June 22; 14 patients resided in the same apartment complex. Of the 18 cases, 17 were confirmed and one was probable. Two patients developed severe complications (pneumonia and ataxia with postviral sensory neuritis) and were hospitalized. All the patients were born in Mexico. The median age was 22 years (range: 18-28 years), and 17 were men.

On May 31, ADPH initiated control measures at the apartment complex and poultry processing plant. To increase community awareness, ADPH distributed flyers in English and Spanish and gave press releases to the local news media. In the apartment complex, ADPH vaccinated susceptible persons on the basis of disease history and performed serology to identify those who would need a second dose of vaccine. At the plant, ADPH offered serologic testing to all workers and vaccinated persons with a negative varicella IgG.

On June 22, a second cluster of seven varicella cases was identified among adults born in Mexico who worked at a sawmill in another Alabama county. The two outbreaks could not be linked.

Varicella outbreaks among adults are less common than among children. Because the potential for serious disease is higher in adults, state and local health departments should be alert to these outbreaks. In addition, the susceptibility among adults from certain regions in Mexico is higher than in U.S.-born adults. Outbreaks associated with severe complications or among adults and adolescents should be investigated and controlled. During varicella outbreaks, infected patients should be isolated at home; varicella vaccine is recommended for exposed persons. Depending on urgency, vaccination can be offered on the basis of a negative or uncertain disease history and/or a negative serologic test. Because most adults with a negative or uncertain varicella history are immune to varicella when tested, serologic testing may decrease the number of vaccine doses needed for outbreak control.

Virus isolation from vesicular fluid, a swab from the base of a skin lesion, or from saliva can assist in confirming an outbreak. Exposed persons who are at high risk for severe disease, including susceptible pregnant women, should receive varicella zoster immune globulin (VZIG) within 96 hours of varicella exposure. Managing varicella in adults includes the routine administration of acyclovir. The optimal strategy for varicella control is to prevent outbreaks by implementing existing policy recommendations. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends vaccinating susceptible adults, especially those at high risk for exposure or transmission.

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To obtain the full text version (HTML format) of this MMWR article, including a figure depicting the number of varicella cases linked and not linked to the apartment complex by date of rash onset, go to:
http://www.cdc.gov/epo/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm4932a3.htm

For information on how to obtain a free electronic subscription to the MMWR, see the instructions that follow article four below.
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(2)
August 18, 2000
CDC'S IMMUNIZATION UPDATE 2000 SATELLITE BROADCAST SET FOR SEPTEMBER 14, 2000

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has scheduled Immunization Update 2000, an interactive satellite broadcast, for September 14, 2000. The broadcast will air twice, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and again from 12 to 2:30 p.m., Eastern Time. The program will offer the latest immunization recommendations and will also feature a question-and-answer session via toll-free telephone with William Atkinson, MD, MPH, and Raymond Strikas, MD, both medical epidemiologists from CDC's National Immunization Program. Anticipated topics include new recommendations for the use of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, influenza vaccine, meningococcal vaccine, hepatitis B vaccine for adolescents, and recent vaccine safety issues.

The target audience includes health professionals such as physicians, nurses, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, medical students, and others who provide immunizations and immunization information. Continuing education credit will be offered.

For more information on registration and the technical specifications for the broadcast, go to CDC's website at:
http://www.cdc.gov/PHTN/FACT-SHEETS/IMM-2000/130023.htm
or contact your state or county immunization program. A list of state immunization coordinators is available on the website of CDC's National Immunization Program at:
http://www.cdc.gov/nip/ed/coordinators.htm

If you have additional questions about the program content of this broadcast, contact Craig Wilkins at (404) 639-8799 or email ckw4@cdc.gov

For a detailed list of additional upcoming immunization and hepatitis conferences and events, visit IAC's "Calendar of Events" at: http://www.immunize.org/calendar/
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(3)
August 18, 2000
WORKSHOP ON MANAGEMENT OF HEPATITIS B: 2000 TO BE HELD SEPTEMBER 8-10, 2000, AT THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases will offer a Workshop on Management of Hepatitis B: 2000 on September 8-10, 2000, at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md.

The meeting is designed to assess the current status of hepatitis B management and develop a set of recommendations for the optimal management and therapy of this disease.

For an agenda and registration information, call (301) 493-9674, fax (301)-530-0634, email chun@computercraft-usa.com
or click on: http://www.ep.niddk.nih.gov/Divisions/DDN/HEPATITIS/info.html

For a detailed list of additional upcoming immunization and hepatitis conferences and events, visit IAC's "Calendar of Events" at: http://www.immunize.org/calendar/
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(4)
August 18, 2000
CDC PUBLISHES NOTICE OF A WORKSHOP ON VACCINE COMMUNICATION TO BE HELD OCTOBER 5-6, 2000, IN ARLINGTON, VA.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a Notice to Readers in the August 18, 2000, issue of the MMWR about an upcoming Workshop on Vaccine Communication. The complete notice is reprinted below:

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The National Vaccine Advisory Committee, the Inter-Agency Vaccine Communications Group, and the National Vaccine Program Office will co-sponsor a Workshop on Vaccine Communication, October 5-6, 2000, in Arlington, Virginia. The purpose of the workshop is to identify key issues, forces, and trends that influence and shape perceptions about vaccines; determine how to establish more meaningful discussions regarding issues of concern; define options for establishing more effective mechanisms for communicating vaccine benefits and risks; and examine and discuss the effectiveness, purpose, methods, and timing of current vaccine communications.

This workshop should be of interest to persons working in the vaccine and immunization field including health communication and public affairs specialists, public and private sector health-care providers, parent and consumer groups, vaccine manufacturers, and immunization program managers and directors. Additional information is available from the National Vaccine Program Office, telephone (404) 687-6672 or from the World-Wide Web, http://www.cdc.gov/od/nvpo/calendar.htm

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To access the full text of this notice online, go to: http://www.cdc.gov/epo/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm4932a4.htm

HOW TO OBTAIN A FREE ELECTRONIC SUBSCRIPTION TO THE MMWR:
To obtain a free electronic subscription to the "Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report" (MMWR), visit CDC's MMWR website at:
http://www2.cdc.gov/mmwr
Select "Free MMWR Subscription" from the menu at the left of the screen. Once you have submitted the required information, weekly issues of the MMWR and all new ACIP statements (published as MMWR's "Recommendations and Reports") will arrive automatically by e-mail.

For a detailed list of additional upcoming immunization and hepatitis conferences and events, visit IAC's "Calendar of Events" at: http://www.immunize.org/calendar/
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(5)
August 18, 2000
EVALUATION OF NEW VACCINES WORKSHOP TO BE HELD NOVEMBER 14-15, 2000, IN BETHESDA, MD.

A workshop on the evaluation of new vaccines will be offered on November 14-15, 2000, at the Lister Hill Conference Center, National Institutes of Health, in Bethesda, Md. 

Designed for public health professionals evaluating new vaccines and for vaccine manufacturers, the workshop will:

* describe the evolution over time of new vaccine evaluation
* describe current approaches to post-marketing safety evaluation
* discuss public concerns about vaccine safety
* explore alternatives for enhancing post-marketing safety evaluation
* explore the value and feasibility of larger pre-licensure trials

The workshop will invite discussion on the optimal balance between pre-licensure and post-licensure evaluation of vaccine safety.

There is no registration fee for the workshop, but seating is limited. The registration cut-off is September 15, 2000, and there will be no on-site registration.

The workshop is sponsored by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER), the U.S. National Institutes of Health National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases (NIAID), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration, and the National Vaccine Program Office (NVPO).

For program information, contact Dr. Susan Ellenberg or Dr. Mary Foulkes at (301) 827-3034.

For registration, contact Sandy Coffin by telephone at (301) 827-3034, by fax (301) 827-3529, or by email at coffins@cber.fda.gov

For an online registration form, go to:
http://www.fda.gov/cber/meetings/vac111400reg.pdf (link discontinued) or
http://www.fda.gov/cber/meetings/vac111400reg.txt (link discontinued)

For a detailed list of additional upcoming immunization and hepatitis conferences and events, visit IAC's "Calendar of Events" at: http://www.immunize.org/calendar/

 

Immunization Action Coalition1573 Selby AvenueSt. Paul MN 55104
E-mail: admin@immunize.org Web: http://www.immunize.org/
Tel: (651) 647-9009Fax: (651) 647-9131

This page was updated on February 15, 2002