Vaccines in practice - 2009

UK economic evaluation and vaccination policy
Matthew Taylor
pp 1-4
With the number of available health technologies increasing at a greater rate than ever before, there is a growing need to ensure that decision-makers have the necessary tools to select and implement only those technologies that offer the greatest benefits to society. This, combined with the limited budgets available to healthcare providers, means that rigorous assessment of the benefits and costs of new interventions is both useful and necessary.
Comment: Positivity in the face of adversity
Peter M English
pp 3-3
Swine flu vaccination should, by now, be well under way, with everybody clear about who is supposed to be offered it and in what order of priority. It will be very interesting to see what the uptake levels are. So much depends on how people balance the risks of vaccination against the risks of disease. I have been saddened by the way that so many healthcare professionals (who should know better) have exaggerated concerns about the flu vaccine.
Myths about the MMR vaccine
Michael Fitzpatrick
pp 5-5
Although it is not known what causes autism, it is clear that measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine does not cause it. This article dispels a few of the myths surrounding MMR vaccination.
Vaccinating premature infants
Eva P Galiza and Paul T Heath
pp 6-7
The premature infant is at increased risk of infections, and is, therefore, in need of protection from vaccine-preventable diseases as early as possible. However, this group of vulnerable infants is also particularly prone to delayed vaccination. With improved healthcare delivery and medical intervention, we will inevitably see a rise in the population of premature infants and effective immunisation strategies will hence become more important.
The evolution of the rotavirus vaccine
Bharat Pankhania
pp 8-10
Rotavirus infection is a leading cause of childhood gastroenteritis and death, killing half a million children annually in developing countries and accounting for one-third of all hospitalisations for diarrhoea-related infections worldwide. Rotaviruses are also responsible for approximately 39% of childhood diarrhoea-related hospitalisations worldwide.
Practical aspects of vaccination: part 1
Linda E Diggle
pp 11-11
While discussing immunisation, Daly noted that, the longer a practitioner works after qualifying, the greater his or her deviation from recommended practice will be. Although many of us would like to disagree with this statement, we would be wise to reflect for a moment on our own practice. If a junior member of staff were to question your immunisation procedures, could you draw upon evidence to justify all that you do? This article considers some common questions around the practical aspects of vaccination.