Special Article | Open Access
The Role of Pediatricians as Key Stakeholders in Influencing Immunization Policy Decisions for the Introduction of Meningitis B Vaccine in Canada: The Ontario Perspective
As key stakeholders in immunization policy decisions, the Pediatricians of Ontario held an accredited conference on January 18, 2014, to discuss prevention of invasive meningococcal disease. Five key recommendations were put forth regarding immunization strategies to protect children from meningococcal serogroup B disease. The recently approved four-component meningococcal B (4CMenB) vaccine should be recommended and funded as part of Ontario’s routine immunization schedule and should also be mandated for school attendance. Public funding for 4CMenB immunization is justified based on current MenB epidemiology, vaccine coverage, cost effectiveness and acceptability, as well as legal, political and ethical considerations related to 4CMenB immunization, particularly because routine recommendations and funding are currently in place for vaccination against meningococcal serogroups that cause significantly less disease in Canada than MenB. Broadly, the goals are to assist individual practitioners in advocating the benefits of 4CMenB vaccination to parents, and to counterbalance recommendations from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization and the Canadian Paediatric Society.
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