A recent study conducted in Brazil’s state of Minas Gerais revealed that the recommended coverage target for adolescents in receiving the MenACWY vaccine has not been met since its introduction. The study highlighted the year 2021 as the one with the highest number of municipalities reaching the target of 80% coverage.
In 2021, the World Health Organization released a document called “Defeating meningitis by 2030,” which aimed to reduce cases of vaccine-preventable bacterial meningitis by 50% and deaths due to meningitis by 70%. A study carried out in the United Kingdom showed promising results after the introduction of the MenACWY vaccination program, including a significant reduction in different serogroups of meningococci and herd protection.
However, in Minas Gerais, the coverage of the MenACWY vaccine for adolescents aged 15 to 19 years was found to be lower than the desired target. The study highlighted several factors influencing vaccination coverage among adolescents. Adolescents often do not engage in health services or health promotion activities due to their developmental characteristics and the belief that they are in good health. Many are also unaware of the need for vaccination in their age group, which can be attributed to a lack of health education at school. Additionally, healthcare professionals, especially those in the Family Health Strategy, are often not adequately prepared to address the specific needs of adolescents.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also played a role in reducing vaccination coverage among children and adolescents. Furthermore, a separate study conducted in Minas Gerais revealed low vaccination coverage rates for another immunobiological among the adolescent population.
The study identified spatial autocorrelation of vaccination coverage for the MenACWY vaccine in Minas Gerais, with low-low clusters found in certain regions. Several contextual factors were associated with vaccine coverage, including indices of social responsibility in health and public safety, as well as per capita expenditure on education activities.
The study emphasized the importance of primary healthcare indicators such as hospitalizations for conditions sensitive to primary care as measures of quality. The availability of vaccines alone does not guarantee high vaccination rates, as individual decisions still play a significant role.
In conclusion, the study underscores the need to improve vaccination coverage for the MenACWY vaccine among adolescents in Minas Gerais. Efforts must be made to address the various factors that influence vaccination uptake, including better health education, increased awareness among adolescents and their families, and improved training for healthcare professionals.
– World Health Organization: “Defeating meningitis by 2030”
– United Kingdom study on MenACWY vaccination program
– Additional immunobiological study in Minas Gerais
– Minas Gerais Index of Social Responsibility
– Family Health Strategy in Minas Gerais
– Impact of public safety on vaccination coverage