Low maternal immunisation due to lack of guidance

US EXPERTS have called for a maternal immunisation schedule, suggesting the lack of such guidance is a factor in the poor uptake of vaccination by pregnant women.

“What is perplexing is why this concept has not become a priority among obstetricians, vaccinologists, professional societies and public health officials,” they wrote in Vaccine.

A maternal schedule should include routine administration of influenza (now 49% cover) and Tdap (dTpa) vaccines, they said, also recommending hepatitis A and B, meningococcal and pneumococcal if risk factors were present during pregnancy.

HPV, MMR, varicella and zoster vaccines would be given pre-pregnancy or post-partum in women not already immune, or when risk factors were present.

“Prevention always trumps treatment, and recent epidemics… make clear that pregnant women and their infants are at risk for infections that can be prevented safely and effectively, now, by routine