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Somerset County Department of Health LINCS* Notification

Please see the attached document with information regarding NJ school immunization requirements and pertussis-containing vaccine shortages. The message appears here for your convenience.

As the new school year approaches, the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) Vaccine Preventable Disease Program (VPDP) would like to remind all health care and public health professionals of the importance of being up-to-date on immunizations against vaccine-preventable diseases. School immunization requirements are an important tool to ensure that children are protected. Children who are not vaccinated are at increased risk for disease and can spread disease to others in their classroom and community.

All children enrolling in and attending licensed child care, preschool and school facilities within New Jersey must meet minimum immunization requirements. Information about required vaccines is available through the VPDP website at http://www.state.nj.us/health/cd/imm.shtml .

Health care and public health professionals should review the New Jersey vaccination requirements to ensure that adequate vaccine doses and supplies are available to meet the needs of the population served.

Unfortunately, certain pertussis-containing vaccines might be in short supply as we begin this school year. These shortages affect both private and Vaccines for Children Program supplies.

Sanofi Pasteur's Pentacel (DTaP-IPV/Hib) and Daptacel (DTaP) are expected to remain in short supply throughout the summer of 2013. As a result of the ongoing Pentacel vaccine shortage that began in April 2012, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has experienced increased demand for Pediarix (DTaP-IPV-HepB) vaccine. GSK has taken steps to meet this increased demand until Pentacel is available without restrictions, which is currently anticipated to occur in Fall 2013. In addition, doses of Sanofi Pasteur's Adacel (Tdap) are anticipated to be limited, though doses will continue to be available. GSK's Boostrix (Tdap) will be available to address any potential gaps related to the Adacel supply limitation.

Providers might need to find alternative vaccines during the shortage. Single-component DTaP, IPV, HepB and Hib vaccines and other age-appropriate licensed combination vaccines are available to complete series begun with Pentacel or Pediarix. Currently, there is sufficient supply of alternative products to meet the anticipated demand. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed a guidance document and quick reference sheet to assist providers utilize alternative vaccines during this shortage. These materials are available through the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vac-gen/shortages/ .

The most effective way to prevent pertussis is through vaccination with DTaP for infants and children and with Tdap for preteens, teens and adults. Maintaining vaccination rates will help prevent and control pertussis disease and outbreaks that have affected many states including New Jersey.

The CDC and NJDOH recommend that providers continue to follow the Advisory Committee of Immunization Practices (ACIP) immunization schedule and ensure that children receive all recommended doses of DTaP, Hib, HepB, polio, and Tdap vaccines on time.

Because there is ample supply of alternative vaccines to meet the anticipated demand, child care, preschool, and school immunization requirements remain in effect. The VPDP will continue to monitor this ongoing shortage and provide updates as necessary.

Recommended vaccination schedules are available through the ACIP website at http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/acip/ .