IMPACT OF COVID19 PANDEMIC ON TIMELY VACCINATION IN INFANTS
Introduction. Due to restrictive measures and health system overload during the COVID19 pandemic around the world, there was a consequent decline in the compulsory vaccination coverage.
Aim. The aim of our study was to examine whether the number of vaccinated infants with the combined vaccines DTaP-IPV-HiB and MMR in the environment with traditionally high vaccination coverage (≥ 95%) has decreased.
Methods. In this retrospective study, we reviewed the vaccination records of 159 children born between September 1, 2018 and August 31, 2020. The subjects were divided into two groups: Group 19: children who met the condition for timely vaccination before the COVID19 pandemic, and Group 20: children who met the condition after the COVID19 pandemic. The obtained data were processed by a computer program for statistical analysis of data (SPSS, version 20), and we used the Chi-square test for the significance level p=0.05, and the confidence level P=0.95 (95%).
Results. Group 19 vaccinated before the COVID19 pandemic: 97.6% of received DTaP IPV HiB by 6 months of age, and 96.3% MMR vaccine by 15 months. Group 20 vaccinated after the declaration of the pandemic: 84.4% of the subjects received DTaP IPV HiB by 6 months of age, and 71.4% were vaccinated with MMR vaccine. In both cases, a statistically significant difference was registered in the number of vaccinated before and after the beginning of the COVID19 pandemic.
Conclusion. Despite recommendations to continue mandatory immunization, the COVID19 pandemic has led to a reduction in the number of people vaccinated against vaccine-preventable diseases.
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