Recent News

Meningococcal disease declines 70% in US

Nov 16 2017

New surveillance data demonstrated a steady decline in the incidence of meningococcal disease over the past 2 decades in the United States. Substantial reductions in serogroups covered by the meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY) reflect the impact of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) 2005 recommendation to vaccinate individuals aged 11 to 18 years, and the committee’s 2010 recommendation to administer a booster dose to adolescents aged 16 years and older, according to Jessica R. MacNeil, MPH, epidemiologist at the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, and colleagues.

Source: Healio Healio

During a hepatitis A emergency, there's a nationwide shortage of vaccine

Nov 15 2017

The battle against Hepatitis A outbreaks across the US is being stymied by a national shortage of the vaccine needed to combat it. "Current supply is not sufficient to support demand for vaccine," the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told CNN in a written statement. Southeast Michigan has seen 495 cases of Hepatitis A and 19 deaths, mostly in Macomb and Wayne counties and in Detroit. The outbreak began in August of 2016, and after a drop off during the winter, has been climbing since February of this year, said Michigan Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson Angela Minicuci. "We have a limited supply of vaccine," said Minicuci, "so we are prioritizing delivery to high-risk populations."

Source: CNN CNN

How common are flu shot side effects?

Nov 14 2017

With fall well underway and winter just around the corner, chances are your doctor, pharmacist, and maybe even your mom are telling you it's time to roll up your sleeve for a flu shot. If you're inclined to ignore them, we get it: No one really enjoys being jabbed with a needle. But many people aren't primarily dissuaded by a quick pinch; instead, they're convinced that the vaccine has too many side effects and too few benefits to be worth the trouble. Are they right?

Source: Fox News Fox News

Annual influenza vaccination does not prevent natural immunity

Nov 14 2017

Earlier studies have suggested that having repeated annual influenza vaccination can prevent natural immunity to the virus, and potentially increase the susceptibility to influenza illness in the event of a pandemic, or when the vaccine does not match the virus circulating in the population. But now, researchers at the Influenza Center in Bergen report that annual influenza vaccination does not increase susceptibility to influenza infection in years of vaccine mismatch. "These findings are important because they show that it is only positive to have annual influenza vaccination, and it supports continuing the policy of repeated annual vaccination," says Professor Rebecca Cox, Head of the Influenza Centre.

Source: Medical Xpress

FDA approves HBV vaccine Heplisav-B for adults

Nov 10 2017

Dynavax announced that the FDA approved Heplisav-B, a recombinant hepatitis B vaccine, for all known subtypes of HBV in adults aged 18 years or older. Heplisav-B is a combination of HBV surface antigen with Dynavax’s proprietary Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) agonist, designed to enhance immune response. The treatment consists of two doses, with the second dose provided at 1 month.

Source: Healio Healio

Head and Neck Cancers Are on the Rise— and Younger Men Are at Risk

Nov 10 2017

You’ve probably heard of human papilloma virus, or HPV, which is the most common sexually transmitted infection in America, according to the CDC. For a long time, experts knew that HPV could raise a woman’s risk for cervical cancer. But there didn’t appear to be much risk for HPV-infected men. That’s changed. New research shows HPV is fueling a massive spike in oropharyngeal (head and neck) cancer among men. And surprisingly, some doctors say this form of cancer is showing up more and more among guys in their 20s and 30s. “Traditionally, we thought of head and neck cancers as mostly due to excessive smoking and drinking,” says Brett Comer, M.D., an assistant professor of otolaryngology, as well as a surgeon, at the University of Kentucky. Dr. Comer says that in the past, these cancers tended to show up during a man’s 50s, 60s, and beyond. “But for the past 20 years, we’ve seen those smoking- and drinking-related cancers go down, while HPV-related cancers have gone up,” he says.

Source: Men's Health Men's Health

HPV vaccine also prevents uncommon childhood respiratory disease, study suggests

Nov 09 2017

The vaccine that protects against cancer-causing types of human papillomavirus (HPV) also prevents an uncommon but incurable childhood respiratory disease, according to a new study published in The Journal of Infectious Diseases. The findings suggest that the chronic and difficult-to-treat condition, recurrent respiratory papillomatosis, is disappearing in Australian children as a result of the nation's highly successful HPV vaccination program.

Source: Science Daily Science Daily

Online, social media intervention improves infant vaccination rates

Nov 06 2017

The use of a web-based, social media platform that includes blogs, discussion forums and a way for pregnant women to question health care experts about infant vaccination positively affected vaccine behaviors of parents, according to a study published in Pediatrics. To examine whether early childhood immunization could increase as a result of a web-based, social media intervention, researchers conducted a three-armed, randomized controlled trial from September 2013 to July 2016 in Colorado.

Source: Healio Healio

Here's Why Vaccines Are So Crucial

Nov 01 2017

If children in poor countries got the shots that rich countries take for granted, hundreds of thousands of young lives could be saved. Go see the child, Samir Saha said. Just sit with her. Probably the siblings will be there too, the brother and sister whose lives are also altered permanently. ‘This is why the vaccine is so important,’ Saha said. ‘We want to reduce this number to a minimum, if not zero. So no other children will be like this.’ It was a little after dawn in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, and Saha was in the back seat of his car, brooding. A uniformed driver threaded the Toyota through a cacophonous mess of jitneys, motorcycles, rickshaws, trucks, and battered buses with passengers hanging out the doors. “We could save the life, but we could not …” He left the sentence unfinished. “You’ll be seeing the scenario,” he said. “You’ll understand.”

Source: National Geographic Magazine National Geographic Magazine

Sick days: Getting the flu can wreak havoc on your finances

Nov 01 2017

Every year around this time, the ever-evolving influenza virus begins descending upon the Northern Hemisphere, bringing misery to the millions of Americans who end up suffering from it. On top of the wretched physical symptoms it causes — including fever, chills, muscle aches, cough and fatigue — the cost of getting the flu is generally greater than a dose of prevention. Yet most people apparently don't mind the risk. In the 2015-2016 flu season, just 43.3% of U.S. adults got the flu vaccine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For those under age 18, the rate was 59%. At the same time, an estimated 24.5 million were stricken with the flu, resulting in 11 million medical visits, 308,000 hospitalizations and 12,000 deaths. The financial impact? An estimated annual $10.4 billion in direct costs for hospitalizations and outpatient visits for adults. "Getting the flu shot should be a no-brainer," said certified financial planner Chris Chen, wealth strategist with Insight Financial Strategists in Waltham, Massachusetts. "The low or free cost of the shot is one of the great deals of everyday living, given what it can cost if you get the flu." In the 2015-2016 flu season, the CDC estimates that the flu vaccine prevented about 5.1 illnesses, 2.5 million flu-induced medical visits and 71,000 hospitalizations.

Source: USA Today USA Today