|Abstract||Routine vaccination of children is an effective way to reduce hepatitis A incidence in the United States. Since licensure of hepatitis A vaccine during 1995--1996, the hepatitis A childhood immunization strategy has been implemented incrementally, starting with the recommendation of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) in 1996 to vaccinate children living in communities with the highest disease rates and continuing in 1999 with ACIP's recommendations for vaccination of children living in states, counties, and communities with consistently elevated hepatitis A rates. These updated recommendations represent the final step in the childhood hepatitis A immunization strategy, routine hepatitis A vaccination of children nationwide. Implementation of these recommendations will reinforce existing vaccination programs, extend the benefits associated with hepatitis A vaccination to the rest of the country, and create the foundation for eventual consideration of elimination of indigenous hepatitis A virus transmission. |
This report updates ACIP's 1999 recommendations concerning the prevention of hepatitis A through immunization (CDC. Prevention of hepatitis A through active or passive immunization: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices [ACIP]. MMWR 1999:48[No. RR-12]:1--37) and includes 1) new data on the epidemiology of hepatitis A in the era of hepatitis A vaccination of children in selected U.S. areas, 2) results of analyses of the economics of nationwide routine vaccination of children, and 3) recommendations for the routine vaccination of children in the United States. Previous recommendations for vaccination of persons in groups at increased risk for hepatitis A or its adverse consequences and recommendations regarding the use of immune globulin for protection against hepatitis A are unchanged from the 1999 recommendations.