Uptake and impact of a new live attenuated influenza vaccine programme in England: early results of a pilot in primary school-age children, 2013/14 influenza season

Euro Surveill. 2014 Jun 5;19(22):20823. doi: 10.2807/1560-7917.es2014.19.22.20823.


As part of the introduction and roll-out of a universal childhood live-attenuated influenza vaccination programme, 4–11 year-olds were vaccinated in seven pilot areas in England in the 2013/14 influenza season. This paper presents the uptake and impact of the programme for a range of disease indicators. End-of-season uptake was defined as the number of children in the target population who received at least one dose of influenza vaccine. Between week 40 2013 and week 15 2014, cumulative disease incidence per 100,000 population (general practitioner consultations for influenza-like illness and laboratory-confirmed influenza hospitalisations), cumulative influenza swab positivity in primary and secondary care and cumulative proportion of emergency department respiratory attendances were calculated. Indicators were compared overall and by age group between pilot and non-pilot areas. Direct impact was defined as reduction in cumulative incidence based on residence in pilot relative to non-pilot areas in 4–11 year-olds. Indirect impact was reduction between pilot and non-pilot areas in <4 year-olds and >11 year-olds. Overall vaccine uptake of 52.5% (104,792/199,475) was achieved. Although influenza activity was low, a consistent, though not statistically significant, decrease in cumulative disease incidence and influenza positivity across different indicators was seen in pilot relative to non-pilot areas in both targeted and non-targeted age groups, except in older age groups, where no difference was observed for secondary care indicators.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • England / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunization Programs / statistics & numerical data
  • Incidence
  • Influenza Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Influenza Vaccines / adverse effects
  • Influenza, Human / epidemiology
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control*
  • Male
  • Pilot Projects
  • Schools
  • Seasons
  • Vaccination / statistics & numerical data*
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / administration & dosage*
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / adverse effects


  • Influenza Vaccines
  • Vaccines, Attenuated