Pneumonia After Implementation of the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine Program in the Province of Quebec, Canada

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Background:In Canada, a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine was licensed in 2001, and in the province of Quebec, a publicly-funded program was implemented for high-risk children in 2002, using a 4-dose schedule, and for all children in 2004, using a 3-dose schedule.Objectives:To describe the epidemiology of hospitalized pneumonia in the population aged <5 years.Methodology:Hospital discharge records with a main diagnosis of pneumonia, pleurisy, or empyema were analyzed regarding monthly frequencies by diagnostic categories, duration of stay, proportion of cases admitted to the intensive care unit, and case fatality.Results:Lobar pneumonia represented 32% of 25,319 all-cause pneumonia admissions during the period April 1997 to March 2006. Beginning in the spring of 2004, there was a marked decrease in the frequency of lobar pneumonia, whereas unspecified pneumonia tended to increase to a lesser extent. Compared with the pre-pneumococcal conjugate vaccine period, admissions for all-causes pneumonia decreased by 13% after program implementation and there was no increase in empyema cases.Conclusions:Results are reassuring as to the effectiveness of the pneumococcal vaccination program in Quebec.

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