The journal Pediatrics published a new study suggesting that the number of infants hospitalized for pertussis may be reduced with increased Tdap vaccination among adolescents. The study, which compared 2008-2011 pertussis-related hospitalization rates among infants aged 1 year with expected rates between 2000 and 2005 where Tdap universal vaccination was not yet implemented, showed a significant decrease in hospitalization rates in all the years except 2010. In fact, 50% of pertussis cases among infants are transmitted from older siblings. The authors suggest that although there is some beneficial effect seen with these broader Tdap vaccinations on the incidence of pertussis in infants, even more vaccination in adults and teens is needed to further effectively reduce the incidence. How often do you counsel teens about vaccines? Do you feel that there is potential for increased Tdap vaccination in this age group?
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