Imperfect flu vaccine offered some protection

first_imgAug 12, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – Two studies from Colorado show that the 2003-04 influenza vaccine provided some protection even though it didn’t match up well with the predominant flu virus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says.One study showed that small children who had been fully vaccinated were 25% to 49% less likely than unvaccinated children to contract a flu-like illness, according to an article in the Aug 13 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The other study indicated that adults aged 50 to 64 years were 52% less likely to get the flu if they had been vaccinated.”Influenza vaccine . . . can provide benefit even in years when the influenza vaccine and circulating strains are not matched optimally,” the CDC report states.To assess vaccine effectiveness in children, the investigators retrospectively compared rates of vaccination and medical treatment for influenza and related illnesses in 5,139 children enrolled in Kaiser Permanente Colorado. The study included children aged 6 to 23 months. Illnesses classified as either “influenza-like illness” (ILI) or “pneumonia and influenza” were counted as flu cases.Children who had received two flu shots after September 2003 and at least 14 days before an illness were counted as fully vaccinated. Other children were counted as partially vaccinated or unvaccinated, depending on the number and timing of their shots. By Dec 7, 2003, 752 children were fully vaccinated and 1,388 were partially vaccinated.When they compared fully vaccinated children with unvaccinated children, the investigators found that the vaccine was 25% effective against ILI (P=.052) and 49% effective against pneumonia and influenza (P=.022). However, the partially vaccinated children had no significant reduction in ILI or pneumonia and influenza. The report says the findings add to the evidence that children who have not been vaccinated before should receive two doses of flu vaccine for best protection.To examine the vaccine’s performance in adults, the investigators did a case-control study of people aged 50 to 64 years. The researchers used records from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to identify people who had had a laboratory-confirmed case of influenza in November or December 2003. Controls who had not had flu in that period were recruited through random-digit phone dialing and were matched to patients by age, sex, and telephone area code.The investigators found 304 patients and 1,055 controls who met the study criteria and completed telephone interviews. In the interviews, the participants were asked about flu vaccination and timing and other medical history matters. Half of the patients had medical conditions that increased their risk of flu-related complications.The analysis showed that the vaccine was 52% effective in patients having no high-risk medical condition (95% confidence interval [CI], 31%-66%) and 38% effective in those with a high-risk condition (95% CI, 30%-60%).The report notes that flu vaccine is expected to be about 70% to 90% effective when it is well matched with the major circulating virus strains. The CDC concludes that the 2003-04 vaccine was effective enough to justify recommendations to continue vaccination efforts when there is a “suboptimal match” between the vaccine and the circulating virus.Last December, a preliminary study published by the CDC indicated that the flu vaccine was not effective in protecting Colorado healthcare workers from ILI. The new report says the preliminary study might have been too small to detect low effectiveness against ILI.CDC. Assessment of the effectiveness of the 2003-04 influenza vaccine among children and adults—Colorado, 2003. MMWR 2004;53(31):707-10 [Full text]last_img read more

Sherwood seeks clarity over future

first_img Former Tottenham and England boss Glenn Hoddle is second favourite among bookmakers for the post – behind Sherwood – and confirmed his interest in the job before the match, while Frank de Boer and Louis van Gaal continue to be mentioned as potential appointments. “Whoever takes this job is in a good position,” Sherwood said. “Andre has left the club in a good state, to be honest. There’s nothing wrong with the job he’s done. “If you look at the league table, we’re right up there. We’re also in the European competition next stage. “You can’t knock what he has done at the club, but it is just up to someone now to take it on and hopefully take it onto the next step.” If Sherwood ends up only being at the helm for a short period, whoever comes in will be thanking him for rejuvenating Adebayor. Having been cast aside by Villas-Boas, the Togo striker has scored three goals in two starts under the interim manager and was superb throughout at St Mary’s. “Listen, we all know Adebayor, we all know he’s a top player,” Sherwood said. “He doesn’t need any motivating to go and play now because he’s not played for a long time. He’s a top player and is certainly warranting his place in the team at the moment. “I’ve not said anything to him. Nothing. It’s down to him. “I’ve not had to gee him up. All I’ve said is: ‘There you go Ade, you are going to play and I want you to attack. I want the defenders to defend and the midfielders to play in midfield. Go out there, crack on and do what you do.’ It’s a simple game. “That’s how I’ve always viewed it; it’s about getting the ball to your top players in the right areas of the field. That’s what the players did with us.” The victory stops the rot at Spurs, but continues Southampton’s frustrating recent form. Saints, who took the lead through Adam Lallana and made it 2-2 through Rickie Lambert, have now gone six matches with a win – hardly the best preparation for trips to Cardiff and Everton. “It was very frustrating, we are very angry about the result,” said manager Mauricio Pochettino, who has been linked with the vacant Spurs post. “We actually dressed up as Santa Claus today and gifted them so many goals and so many chances. “We started off quite well in the first half, we got the 1-0 and we were very close to getting the 2-0 but then when we conceded the equaliser it was very hard to get back in the game, especially in the second half it was very tough.” The Portuguese was sacked less than 24 hours after last weekend’s 5-0 humiliation at the hands of Liverpool, with head of football development Sherwood handed temporary control. Sherwood’s first match at the helm resulted in a Capital One Cup exit to West Ham, but on Sunday he oversaw his first victory with an attack-minded display at Southampton. Tim Sherwood is hoping for talks with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy on Monday to find out whether he will stay on as Andre Villas-Boas’ successor. Emmanuel Adebayor netted either side of a Jos Hooiveld own goal as Spurs ran out 3-2 victors, resulting in bookmakers immediately shortening odds on the former midfielder being handed the reins on a permanent basis. The win will certainly not do those chances any harm and Sherwood hopes to take control of the Boxing Day clash with West Brom with a clearer idea on his future. Asked what happens next for him, Sherwood said: “Ideal for me is to have a chat with the chairman and see what’s best for the football club moving forward. “I need to know what they’re thinking moving forwards. I don’t want this job for five minutes. That’s no interest to me. “It is either are we going to move it forward or not? That’s where we are. “There are some great candidates out there for this job. It’s a massive club with history and tradition. “It is fantastic, a great honour to represent them, but it needs to be right for me and, first and foremost, right for the football club. “I need to talk to the chairman and see what he’s got planned. I’ll see him tomorrow because I’m in at the training ground. I’m sure it won’t be before that.” Press Associationlast_img read more