Reuters Health Information (2005-10-28): CDC committee recommends routine hepatitis A vaccination for children
CDC committee recommends routine hepatitis A vaccination for children
Last Updated: 2005-10-28 13:11:06 -0400 (Reuters Health)
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - An advisory committee of
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is now recommending that
hepatitis A vaccination be included in the routine vaccination schedule
of US children.
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) unanimously
agreed on universal hepatitis A vaccination for children between 12 to
35 months of age, with catch-up vaccination through the pre-school
The ACIP's last guidelines, released in 1999, called for vaccination
of children living in states with the highest hepatitis A rates. The
group decided to expand the recommendations to all children when it
became apparent that most cases were now occurring in states in which
hepatitis A vaccination had not been recommended.
"Routine vaccination of children is the most effective way to reduce
the incidence of hepatitis A, " Dr. Steve Cochi, acting director of the
CDC's National Immunization Program, said in a statement. "This
recommendation is an important step toward the total elimination of the
transmission of hepatitis A virus in the US."
Hepatitis A vaccination continues to be recommended for travelers to
countries with high rates of hepatitis A, men who have sex with men,
illegal drug users, and patients with chronic liver disease.