Mission, Objectives and Recommendations
- Raise the profile of pertussis as an important and preventable disease that warrants greater global public health attention.
- Recommend effective immunization strategies for pertussis control.
- Advocate for improved disease surveillance to optimize guidance on public policy and vaccine implementation strategies.
Goals and Objectives
- Evaluate and communicate the need for improved pertussis control and for appropriate vaccination strategies.
- Develop and communicate recommendations on pertussis immunization, disease surveillance, and strategies to control pertussis disease that are acceptable at national, regional, and local levels.
- Advocate the importance of primary immunization and high DTP3 rates as the first target of any country implementing pertussis vaccination.
- Systematically evaluate and prioritize strategies to address the status of pertussis worldwide and the rationale for immunization beyond childhood.
- Improve understanding of the increasing incidence of reported pertussis.
- Provide recommendations to help guide physicians in markets where both wP and aP vaccines are available.
- Reinforce and/or improve current infant and toddler immunization strategies.
- Those countries, particularly LMICs, using wP vaccines for primary infant and childhood immunization, should continue to do so and aim to achieve and/or maintain DTP3 coverage ≥90%.
- Immunization of pregnant women should be a priority.
- The GPI strongly recommends the use of aP vaccines in every pregnant woman where funding and supply make this feasible. Pregnant women should be a top priority group for receiving the aP vaccine.
- Universal immunization of adolescents adults, where resources allow.
- Immunization of healthcare and childcare workers, where resources allow.
- Where national resources allow, aP vaccines should be given in all age groups because of their lower reactogenicity compared with wP vaccines.
- Surveillance systems and diagnostic methods need to be improved:
- The GPI recommends that, while culture remains the gold standard in identification of Bordetella pertussis, all countries should introduce PCR as a diagnostic method and, if possible, supplement with serology, where resources allow. Highest priority should be given to diagnose B. pertussis infections in hospitalized infants suspected to have pertussis.
- The GPI advocates that the following clinical definitions should be used for the clinical diagnosis of pertussis (as per Cherry et al, CID, 2012):
- Where wP vaccines are used, careful attention should be paid to quality control.