Invasive pneumococcal disease (mostly septicaemia, bacteraemia or meningitis) is caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae (also called Pneumococcus). Invasive pneumococcal disease is a cause of severe morbidity and mortality, particularly affecting the elderly, the very young, and those with an absent or nonfunctioning spleen (and those with other causes of impaired immunity).
Currently in Wales, protection from invasive pneumococcal disease is available using two different types of pneumococcal vaccine:
The clinical risk groups who should receive pneumococcal immunisation are those with: Asplenia or dysfunction of the spleen, chronic respiratory disease, chronic heart disease, chronic renal disease, chronic liver disease, diabetes, immunosuppression, cochlear implants, and cerebrospinal fluid leaks.
Uptake of PPV in people aged over 65 years or in clinical risk groups
In July 2006, uptake of pneumococcal vaccination amongst those aged 65 years and over in Wales, immunised at any time in the previous 10 years was 44.2% with uptake by Local Health Board (LHB) ranging from 25% to 64% (see figure)
Uptake amongst patients aged under 65 years in specific risk groups recommended for pneumococcal immunisation was highest in patients with diabetes (35.5%) and lowest in patients with chronic respiratory disease (10.4%).
Figure - Percentage coverage of PPV in Wales by LHB 2006