Implementation of pertussis immunization in health-care personnel.

Infection with Bordetella pertussis is most severe in young infants who frequently acquire it from adults. Pertussisimmunization in adults 25-29 years of age and all adults in close contact with infants <6 months was introduced in Switzerland in 2012. We immediately implemented this new recommendation in our hospital with a vaccination campaign.


Between April 2012 and March 2013 we provided information about the campaign to our staff through several channels and offered appointments for counseling and immunization. After checking indications and contraindications of responding health-care personnel (HCP), informed consent for tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis component (Tdap) immunization was obtained. Specific adverse events (AE) were self-assessed by standardized diaries for 7 days. Statistical analyses were performed using a t-test and Mann-Whitney U-tests SPSS (V21).


Of 852 HCP eligible for pertussis immunization, 427 (51%) responded. Of these, 72 (17%) had already received Tdap <10 years ago, 304 (71%) received Tdap now, 38 (9%) were scheduled for vaccination and 12 (3%) declined. Diaries were returned by 272 (89%) of 304 vaccinees; 56 HCP reported ≥1 local AE, most frequently local swelling (8%), redness (2%), redness and swelling (7%), and fever (5=2%); no serious AE occurred.


Comprehensive efforts were needed to achieve pertussis immunization coverage of ≥49% among all HCP in our institution. Good tolerability of the vaccine and continuous and individual information to HCP about the rationale and benefits of pertussis immunization contributed to this partial success, but increased efforts are needed to mobilize non-responding HCP


Authors:Walther K1, Burckhardt MA1, Erb T2, Heininger U3.

Journal:Vaccine. 2015