After the 2009 H1N1 Influenza pandemic, several evaluations were conducted to determine how effective the influenza vaccine is for protecting children. Maine participated in one of these evaluations.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), working with the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Maine CDC) and the Maine Department of Education, conducted an evaluation of Maine school-aged students who received influenza vaccine during the 2009 H1N1 Influenza Pandemic. 1,800 families (randomly selected) of Maine school-aged children were contacted by school nurses by phone between January and May, 2010. This was a very aggressive evaluation, and the sample size is considered large. The information gathered provided the data necessary to make the following statement:
“One dose of influenza (monovalent pandemic) vaccine provided substantial protection against pH1N1 influenza among school-aged children.”
The full report is available at www.maine.gov/education/sh.
Maine is currently experiencing another challenging influenza year. February is the peak of influenza activity, and this year’s strains are expected to impact healthy children more than adults. Schools still have access to this year’s influenza vaccine and can conduct influenza vaccine clinics in your area. Please contact your local school nurse for more information or Nancy Dube at email@example.com.