Why it is complicated to have your child vaccinated against tuberculosis


Why it is complicated to have your child vaccinated against tuberculosis
Written by madishthestylebar

Not mandatory but recommended, but at the same time not really available. In Paris, the vaccine against tuberculosis (BCG) can easily make young Parisian parents dizzy. Let’s try to see it more clearly.

Why is the vaccine recommended and no longer compulsory?

Based on the recommendations of the WHO and other European countries, the High Council for Public Health (HCSP) “recommends that the practical threshold for defining a country with high tuberculosis endemicity should be an annual incidence of tuberculosis disease > 40/100,000 inhabitants”, recalls the regional health agency (ARS) of Ile-de-France. And therefore to take this threshold to decide whether or not vaccination is compulsory. Above is yes, below is no.

In France, there are 7.6 declared cases per 100,000 inhabitants in 2020, so there is no need for compulsory vaccination. But “in Ile-de-France, the situation is significantly different, specifies the ARS. In 2020, 4,606 cases of tuberculosis were declared in France, including 36% in Ile-de-France. This makes for this same year a tuberculosis declaration rate of 14.3/100,000 inhabitants, or twice the national rate. “That is why it was decided [avis du HCSP du 1er février 2013] to maintain vigilance concerning certain territories including Ile-de-France, indicates the ARS. It is for this reason that the vaccination of children born in Ile-de-France is recommended. »

Why is the rate higher in Ile-de-France?

Quite simply because Ile-de-France is a region with a great “openness to the world”, as the town hall of Paris reminds us, where many people from countries with high tuberculosis endemicity settle, according to the expression of the ARS. The town hall of Paris also advances the explanation of the population density in the region, which can promote the transmission of the disease.

Why is it difficult to get vaccinated in the capital?

“Since 2016, we have been in a phase of global shortage of BCG vaccines linked to manufacturers”, explains the town hall of Paris. As a result, these are rationed and each department receives a specific allocation. This has several consequences. Vaccines are no longer accessible in pharmacies but “limited to the following structures: PMI centers, vaccination centers, tuberculosis control centers and maternity wards”, specifies the ARS. “Children are vaccinated according to priority criteria, if they live in dense homes, if their family has traveled a lot in countries at risk, for example in the case of migratory routes”, lists the town hall of Paris.

Another difficulty is that the vaccine is supplied in bottles of ten doses, which means that “we cannot take patients on the fly, we need appointments so as not to lose the doses, the deadlines are linked to that”, specifies the town hall of Paris. The latter also reports difficulties in recruiting doctors in the popular districts, able to administer the vaccine. This explains why it is sometimes necessary to wait several months to obtain an appointment for vaccination in these districts.

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