Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Update of the National Vaccine Plan

Raymond Strikas and Bruce Gellin. National Vaccine Program Office, Washington, DC, USA

Learning Objectives for this Presentation:

The first National Vaccine Plan was published in 1994. The National Vaccine Program Office (NVPO), in collaboration with Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) units and other federal partners, is updating the Plan. The Public Health Service Act states that the National Vaccine Program Director [the Assistant Secretary of Health] shall coordinate and provide direction for vaccine activities, including research and development, safety and efficacy testing, licensing, production and procurement, distribution and use, evaluating effectiveness and adverse effects, governmental and nongovernmental activities, and federal funding. The Director shall prepare a plan for implementing these responsibilities, which shall establish priorities.


NVPO has met with HHS offices and agencies, with the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense, and the U.S. Agency for International Development, to draft priorities for
the Plan. The updated Plan will summarize current priorities for vaccine-related activities; prioritize existing resources; and identify needs for new resources. These priorities will be reviewed with the National Vaccine Advisory Committee, and then with an expert committee of the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The IOM committee will discuss these priorities with stakeholders, and prepare a report to HHS. NVPO will also solicit input about the Plan from a sample of the general public. The Plan should be completed in 2009.

The Plan's priorities will be presented. They will align with the goals of the 1994 Plan: 1. Develop new and improved vaccines 2. Ensure the optimal safety and effectiveness of
vaccines and immunization 3. Better educate the public and members of the health professions on the benefits and risks of immunization 4. Achieve better use of existing vaccines to prevent disease, disability, and death.

The updated National Vaccine Plan will reflect changes in vaccines since 1994, and offer direction for priorities and accountability in the prevention of infectious diseases by vaccines.