Increase of immunity to rubella and interruption of rubella transmission in Gipuzkoa (Basque Country, Spain) after an enhanced vaccination programme
Sáenz Domínguez, José Ramón
Pérez Trallero, Emilio
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Epidemiology and Infection 132(4) : 685-692 (2004)
In Spain, vaccination against rubella was initiated in schoolgirls in the mid-1970s. In Gipuzkoa, subsequent extensions to the vaccination schedule culminated in 1992 with the introduction of the two-dose measles, mumps and rubella vaccine in children and adolescents of both sexes. Moreover, in 1985 a programme for the identification and vaccination of non-immune parturient women was implemented in the region's main hospital. The prevalence of rubella-susceptible parturient women decreased from 3·7% at the beginning of the study to <1·5% by 1992. Despite this overall decrease, 4·8% of adolescent parturients were susceptible to rubella during 2001–2002. From 1984, the number of reported cases of rubella (children and adults) progressively decreased until 1997, after which there have been no cases of indigenous rubella. There have been no cases of reported congenital rubella since 1984. These results indicate that the vaccine policy carried out in this geographical area has been effective in achieving considerable progress towards rubella elimination.