Background: In the nation-wide double-blind cluster-randomised Finnish Invasive Pneumococcal disease trial (FinIP, ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00861380, NCT00839254), we assessed the indirect impact of the 10-valent pneumococcal Haemophilus influenzae protein D conjugate vaccine (PHiD-CV10) against five pneumococcal disease syndromes.
Methods: Children 6 weeks to 18 months received PHiD-CV10 in 48 clusters or hepatitis B/A-vaccine as control in 24 clusters according to infant 3+1/2+1 or catch-up schedules in years 2009-2011. Outcome data were collected from national health registers and included laboratory-confirmed and clinically suspected invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD), hospital-diagnosed pneumonia, tympanostomy tube placements (TTP) and outpatient antimicrobial prescriptions. Incidence rates in the unvaccinated population in years 2010-2015 were compared between PHiD-CV10 and control clusters in age groups <5 and ≥5 years (5-7 years for TTP and outpatient antimicrobial prescriptions), and in infants <3 months. PHiD-CV10 was introduced into the Finnish National Vaccination Programme (PCV-NVP) for 3-month-old infants without catch-up in 9/2010.
Results: From 2/2009 to 10/2010, 45398 children were enrolled. Vaccination coverage varied from 29 to 61% in PHiD-CV10 clusters. We detected no clear differences in the incidence rates between the unvaccinated cohorts of the treatment arms, except in single years. For example, the rates of vaccine-type IPD, non-laboratory-confirmed IPD and empyema were lower in PHiD-CV10 clusters compared to control clusters in 2012, 2015 and 2011, respectively, in the age-group ≥5 years.
Conclusions: This is the first report from a clinical trial evaluating the indirect impact of a PCV against clinical outcomes in an unvaccinated population. We did not observe consistent indirect effects in the PHiD-CV10 clusters compared to the control clusters. We consider that the sub-optimal trial vaccination coverage did not allow the development of detectable indirect effects and that the supervening PCV-NVP significantly diminished the differences in PHiD-CV10 vaccination coverage between the treatment arms.