Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 16806603
Vaccine 2006 Sep;24(37-39):6232-9
Malawi has extreme poverty and a high-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevalence. Following Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) conjugate vaccine introduction during 2002, we evaluated vaccine impact by reviewing hospital surveillance data for acute bacterial meningitis in Blantyre district among children age 1-59 months admitted during 1997-2005. Documented annual Hib meningitis incidence rates decreased from 20-40/100,000 to near zero among both rural and urban residents despite no change in pneumococcal meningitis incidence rates. Before vaccine introduction, an average of 10 children/year had Hib meningitis and HIV infection compared to 2/year during 2003-2004 and none during 2005. Vaccine effectiveness was high following two or more doses of vaccine. The most urgent future need is for a sustainable routine infant immunization program, including a less expensive vaccine that preferably is delivered in a multivalent form.