Location:Sao Paulo, Brazil
Dates: 5-6 March 2013
Participants:Pan American Organization, Sabin Vaccine Institute, the International Vaccine Access Center at Johns Hopkins University, Center for Diseases Control and Prevention, and epidemiological surveillance direc-tors from 26 countries.
Purpose: To assess the pneumococcal epidemiological profile in the region, and discuss the challenges and op-portunities of surveillance and vaccination in older children and adult populations.
Details: Since childhood pneumococcal conjugate vaccines were introduced in Latin America in 2003, the disease is declining among children who are vaccinated, and it is fundamental to know if there is some impact of this vac-cine in other groups of age and the burden of disease in adults to recommend appropriate vaccination in this group.
The experts and study authors called for 1) increased disease monitoring and more surveillance to understand the full extent of pneumococcal disease in the Americas in all age groups including its economic impact, and to devise effective strategies to prevent it; 2) further research in order for health officials to fully grasp the potential impact of immunizing older populations in Latin America and the Caribbean and; 3) for policymakers to prioritize adult pneumococcal disease on their public health agendas so healthcare professionals can devote more re-sources to detect and report occurrences of the disease and find ways to combat it.
Published in Global Immunization Newsletter, March 2013.