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New observational study suggests use of combination vaccines may improve immunization coverage rates in infants

Atlanta, GA (March 8, 2006) V Results from a new observational study of administrative claims data from the Georgia State Medicaid program showed that infants who received a combination vaccine had higher immunization coverage rates in the first two years of life compared to infants given component vaccines. Results from the study were presented today at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's 40th National Immunization Conference (NIC) in Atlanta, GA, by Gary S. Marshall, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics at University of Louisville, Louisville, KY. The study was conducted by Dr. Marshall in collaboration with Applied Health Outcomes of Palm Harbor, Florida.

The study evaluated the immunization history of infants born between January and September 2003, with continuous enrollment in the Georgia Medicaid Program for at least 24 months following birth, identified from administrative claims of the Georgia Department of Community Health. Infants who were eligible for the study were distributed into two cohorts. The combination group (N=1990) was made up of those infants who received at least one dose of PEDIARIX [Diphtheria and Tetanus Toxoids and Acellular Pertussis Adsorbed (DTaP), Hepatitis B (Recombinant, HepB) and Inactivated Poliovirus Vaccine (IPV) Combined] and the component group (N=1990) consisted of those who were immunized with separate injections of DTaP, HepB and IPV or alternate combinations (DTaP-Hib or HepB-Hib)]. Each infant in the combination vaccine group was matched by gender and birth date to an infant in the component vaccine group. Immunization coverage rates were evaluated at 24 months of age by comparing the status of actual vaccinations administered according to the ACIP/AAP/AAFP recommended immunization schedule.

Results from the analysis showed that the combination cohort had significantly higher coverage rates than the component cohort for 4 doses of diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (DTaP) vaccine (58.0 percen
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8-Mar-2006


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