Article Title

The changing epidemiology of invasive pneumococcal disease in Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal Western Australians from 1997 through 2007 and emergence of nonvaccine serotypes


Background: In 2001, Australia introduced a unique 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (7vPCV) 2-, 4-, and 6-month schedule with a 23-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (23vPPV) booster for Aboriginal children, and in 2005, 7vPCV alone in a 2-, 4-, and 6-month schedule for non-Aboriginal children. Aboriginal adults are offered 23vPPV but coverage is poor. We investigated trends in invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) in Western Australia (WA).

Methods: Enhanced IPD surveillance has been ongoing since 1996. We calculated IPD incidence rates for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians before and after introduction of 7vPCV.

Results: A total of 1792 cases occurred during the period 1997–2007; the IPD incidence rate was 47 cases per 100,000 population per year among Aboriginal people and 7 cases per 100,000 population per year in non-Aboriginal people. After introduction of 7vPCV, IPD rates among Aboriginal children decreased by 46% for those <2 years of age and by>40% for those 2–4 years of age; rates decreased by 64% and 51% in equivalent age groups for non-Aboriginal children. IPD rates decreased by >30% in non-Aboriginal people ⩾50 years of age but increased among Aboriginal adults (eg, from 59.1 to 109.6 cases per 100,000 population per year among those 30–49 years of age). Although IPD due to 7vPCV serotypes decreased in all age groups, IPD incidence due to non-7vPCV serotypes increased, and it almost doubled among Aboriginal adults 30–49 years of age (from 48.3 to 97.0 cases per 100,000 population per year). Among non-Aboriginal children, 37% of IPD is now due to serotype 19A.

Conclusions: IPD incidence rates have decreased markedly among children and non-Aboriginal adults with a 3-dose infant 7vPCV schedule. However, IPD due to non-7vPCV serotypes has increased and is of particular concern among young Aboriginal adults, for whom an intensive 23vPPV campaign is needed. An immunization register covering all age groups should be established.



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