• Effectiveness of 2010/2011 seasonal influenza vaccine in Ireland.

      Barret, A S; Donnell, J O; O'Hora, A; Collins, C; Coughlan, S; Joyce, M; Moran, J; Waters, A; O'Malley, A; Domegan, L; et al. (2012-02)
      We conducted a case-control study to estimate the 2010/2011 trivalent influenza vaccine effectiveness (TIVE) using the Irish general practitioners' influenza sentinel surveillance scheme. Cases were influenza-like illness (ILI) patients with laboratory-confirmed influenza. Controls were ILI patients who tested negative for influenza. Participating sentinel general practitioners (GP) collected swabs from patients presenting with ILI along with their vaccination history and other individual characteristics. The TIVE was computed as (1 - odds ratiofor vaccination) x100%. Of 60 sentinel GP practices, 22 expressed interest in participating in the study and 17 (28%) recruited at least one ILI patient. In the analysis, we included 106 cases and 85 controls. Seven controls (8.2%) and one influenza case (0.9%) had been vaccinated in 2010/2011. The estimated TIVE against any influenza subtype was 89.4% [95% CI: 13.8; 99.8%], suggesting a protective effect against GP-attended laboratory confirmed influenza. This study design could be used to monitor influenza vaccine effectiveness annually but sample size and vaccination coverage should be increased to obtain precise and adjusted estimates.
    • Pertussis outbreak in northwest Ireland, January - June 2010.

      Barret, A S; Ryan, A; Breslin, A; Cullen, L; Murray, A; Grogan, J; Bourke, S; Cotter, S; Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC), Dublin, Ireland. annesophie.barret@hse.ie (Euro surveillance : bulletin Européen sur les maladies transmissibles = European communicable disease bulletin, 2010-09-02)
      We report a community pertussis outbreak that occurred in a small town located in the northwest of Ireland. Epidemiological investigations suggest that waning immunity and the absence of a booster dose during the second year of life could have contributed to the outbreak. The report also highlights the need to reinforce the surveillance of pertussis in Ireland and especially to improve the clinical and laboratory diagnosis of cases.