AAP guidelines for 2013-2014 influenza vaccination

September 3, 2013
Contemporary Pediatrics Staff
Contemporary Pediatrics Staff

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has released its guidance for influenza vaccination during the 2013-2014 influenza season. As always, AAP recommends that all children and adolescents aged 6 months and older receive either the trivalent or quadrivalent influenza vaccine, and children should be immunized as soon as the vaccine becomes available.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has released its guidance for influenza vaccination during the 2013-2014 influenza season. As always, AAP recommends that all children and adolescents aged 6 months and older receive either the trivalent or quadrivalent influenza vaccine, and children should be immunized as soon as the vaccine becomes available.

The current vaccine will cover strains of influenza that are different from last season’s strains. Trivalent influenza vaccine contains the influenza A subtypes H1N1 and H3N2 and an influenza B virus that have been predicted as the likely influenza types for the upcoming season. The new quadrivalent vaccine will include an additional influenza B lineage. Two trivalent vaccines that do not use eggs also will be available for egg-allergic persons.

AAP states that the dosing algorithm for influenza vaccines in children aged 6 months to 8 years remains unchanged from the 2012-2013 guidelines. There is no indicated preference between the trivalent and quadrivalent formulations. Healthy children aged 2 years and older can be given either inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV; trivalent or quadrivalent) through injection or live-attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV; quadrivalent only) intranasally.

Universal vaccination of children who attend day care or school has been shown to decrease the incidence of childhood influenza and also the transmission of influenza virus to household contacts and the community at large. As of August 24, 2013, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had reported 160 laboratory-confirmed, influenza-associated pediatric deaths during the 2012-2013 influenza season. The majority of deaths occurred among children who had not been immunized against influenza.

The guidelines also stress the importance of immunizing all practice members. Ensuring that staff is immunized not only protects them from the flu but also provides a positive image of flu vaccination to patients and their parents. The AAP Section on Administration and Practice Management and the Childhood Immunization Support Program offer an “Earn Your Stripe” poster template that can be personalized to illustrate your practice’s influenza immunization support.

 

 

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