October 2007 NVAC Meeting Minutes
Dr. Birkhead asked whether there had been discussion about making an affirmative recommendation from NVAC that school mandates are a legitimate public health tool that are to be encouraged. He explained that the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has such a recommendation; however, CDC and ACIP statements only reference the Task Force. He further noted that neither CDC, nor ACIP, nor NVAC have made affirmative recommendations. Dr. Gordon replied that through the process of discussing mandates with State representatives and State epidemiologists, the Working Group realized it was important to acknowledge the value of mandates, which they did in the body of the text but did not make blanket recommendations. Dr. Hinman observed that the ACIP has recommended the use of mandates for the varicella vaccine.
Dr. Freed said that the Committee would be unable to vote without specifically revised language. He then asked Dr. Gordon to make the appropriate changes in wording that were recommended during today’s meeting. Dr. Freed focused on the wording around the issues of safety and asked that Dr. Gordon bring specific wording back to the Committee on the second day of the conference for a final vote.
National Vaccine Plan—Dr. Raymond A. Strikas
The purpose of Dr. Strikas’s presentation was to report to the Committee on the process of updating the National Vaccine Plan. NVPO had several interagency meetings and one-on-one discussions with various Government agencies that developed priorities for the plan, which NVPO is in the process of refining. These priorities are still categorized by the 1994 plan’s goals, which were to develop new and improved vaccines, ensure optimal safety and effectiveness of vaccines, educate the public and healthcare professionals on the benefits and risks of vaccines, and achieve better use of existing vaccines.
NVPO developed the following 11 key priority areas for the plan:
Enhance vaccine research and development;
Improve adult immunization rates;
Achieve 90 percent coverage for ACIP-recommended vaccines in adolescents;
Reduce or eliminate financial barriers to vaccinations;
Maintain high vaccination coverage levels in children;
Develop new vaccines;
Enhance the security and stability of the vaccine supply;
Better monitor adverse events and determine risk factors for adverse events;
Continue vaccine injury compensation;
Advance global disease reduction and eradication; and
Ensure systems are in place to monitor vaccine-preventable diseases and immunization coverage through surveillance.
Many, but not all, agencies and offices provided NVPO with priorities; however, at this point, the list of priorities has not been prioritized. One of NVPO’s tasks is to review the priorities they received to see if they are appropriate and to determine if anything is missing. They also need to propose actions or milestones to be completed by participating agencies and offices as well as review who should be the participatory agencies. In the short term, NVPO hopes to prioritize these areas and have some milestones developed by 2012 to 2015. Once that has been completed, NVPO will give a draft document to NVAC for their review. NVPO also wants to involve stakeholders outside of the Government. Therefore, NVPO will engage other expert stakeholders through the IOM expert committee. NVPO would also like to involve the public and will do so by engaging them in focus groups and town hall–style meetings. Dr. Strikas also requested the presence of at least two NVAC members at the focus groups next week.