Tue, 04/02/2019 | News

PAEDS contribution to vital influenza surveillance

PAEDS continues to contribute important paediatric data to national influenza surveillance in collaboration with FluCAN and with the support of a NHMRC partnership grant. After a year of record high influenza activity in 2017, PAEDS has remained well placed to capture hospitalisations, with all seven sites engaged in surveillance for 2018 and 2019.

In 2018, most state and territories committed funding to allow all children and infants aged 6 months to less than 5 years to be vaccinated. Influenza vaccines are adjusted each year to provide optimal coverage against circulating influenza strains, so ongoing surveillance is critical to understanding disease burden and vaccine efficacy and evaluating vaccination program strategies. Clinical epidemiology and vaccine effectiveness of paediatric influenza hospitalisations are analysed each year with FluCAN data; latest results will be available soon. Further analysis is underway to describe hospitalisations among infants under 6 months of age and determine effectiveness of maternal vaccination over several years.