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Influenza vaccine efficacy in young children attending childcare: A randomised controlled trial

Aim: Influenza causes a substantial burden in young children. Vaccine efficacy (VE) data are limited in this age group. We examined trivalent influenza vaccine (TIV) efficacy and safety in young children attending childcare. Methods: A double-blind, randomised controlled trial in children aged 6 to 48 months was conducted with recruitment from Sydney childcare centres in 2011. Children were randomised to receive two doses of TIV or control hepatitis A vaccine. Efficacy was evaluated against polymerase chain reaction-confirmed influenza using parent-collected nose/throat swabs during influenza-like-illness. Safety outcomes were assessed during 6 months of follow-up. Results: Fifty-seven children were allocated to influenza vaccine and 67 to control; all completed the study. The influenza attack rate was 1.8 vs 13.4% in the TIV and control groups, respectively; VE 87% (95%CI: 0-98%). For children aged 24 to 48 months, 0 vs 8 (18.6%) influenza infections occurred in the TIV and control groups respectively, giving a VE of 100% (16-100%). Efficacy was not shown in children 6 to 24 months, probably due to insufficient power. Injection site and systemic adverse events were mostly mild to moderate with no significant differences, apart from more mild diarrhoea following dose 2 in TIV recipients (11.8 vs 0%). Conclusions: Influenza vaccine appeared efficacious in the subgroup of children aged 24 to 48 months, although caution is required due to the small number of participants. There were no serious adverse events and most parents would vaccinate again. Influenza vaccination in a childcare setting could be valuable and a larger confirmatory study would be helpful. (author abstract)
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Reports & Papers
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