Conflict of interest: None declared.
Immunisation coverage in children with cerebral palsy compared with the general population
Article first published online: 29 JAN 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health © 2013 Paediatrics and Child Health Division (Royal Australasian College of Physicians)
Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health
Volume 49, Issue 2, pages E137–E141, February 2013
How to Cite
Greenwood, V. J., Crawford, N. W., Walstab, J. E. and Reddihough, D. S. (2013), Immunisation coverage in children with cerebral palsy compared with the general population. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health, 49: E137–E141. doi: 10.1111/jpc.12097
- Issue published online: 18 FEB 2013
- Article first published online: 29 JAN 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 9 MAY 2012
- Victorian Medical Insurance Agency
- Department of Human Services, Victoria
- cerebral palsy;
To compare immunisation coverage of a cerebral palsy (CP) cohort with the known general population vaccination coverage statistics.
A cohort of children with CP aged less than 7 years was extracted from the Victorian Cerebral Palsy Register. The vaccination status of these children was compared with the general population using the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR). Details that were audited included overall ‘up-to-date’ status of immunisations and individual vaccines missed.
The CP cohort consisted of 449 children. Eighty-six or 19.2% (95% confidence intervals 15.6–23.1%) of these children were not ‘up to date’ (NUTD) with the Australian immunisation schedule at the time of the ACIR data link (13 March 2009). This NUTD result is well above the general population percentage (range 6.4–8%). This group was divided into subgroups based on age, with all groups having significantly lower rates of immunisation, varying from 100% NUTD in the youngest subgroup to 18.6% in the oldest subgroup. The most common vaccine NUTD was MMR (measles, mumps and rubella), followed by polio and DTaP (diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis).
This study demonstrates that children with CP are at high risk of incomplete and delayed immunisation, a significant problem given the increased health-care needs of this patient group and their increased vulnerability to the complications of vaccine-preventable diseases.