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J Infect Dis. 2000 Feb;181(2):413-8.

Elimination of new chronic hepatitis B virus infections: results of the Alaska immunization program.

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  • 1National Immunization Program, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.


An immunization assessment and a serologic survey were conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of a hepatitis B immunization program in eliminating hepatitis B virus (HBV) transmission among Alaska Natives in a region in which HBV infection is endemic. Hepatitis B vaccine coverage was 93% among 567 children </=10 years old residing in the study villages, and catch-up vaccine coverage among 582 susceptible persons 11-30 years old was 62%. None of 271 tested children </=10 years old were chronically infected with HBV, and just 4 (1.5%) had evidence of resolved infection. In contrast, 16% of 332 persons 11-30 years old (those born before implementation of routine infant hepatitis B vaccination) were chronically infected. A hepatitis B immunization program that includes prevention of perinatal HBV infection, routine infant vaccination, and catch-up vaccination of older children and adults can eliminate new chronic HBV infections in a population with a high rate of chronic infection.

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