Evaluation of Pneumococcal Vaccine

Michael S. Simberkoff, MD
JAMA. 1981;246(12):1299-1300. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03320120011007.
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To the Editor.—  Regarding the article entitled "A Cost-Benefit Analysis of Immunization of Pneumococcal Pneumonia" by Patrick and Woolley (1981; 245:473), this analysis and one published previously1 required estimation of a number of variables, including incidence of vaccine reactions and vaccine-type Streptococcus pneumoniae infections in vaccine recipients and control subjects. Unfortunately, data concerning efficacy of the pneumococcal vaccine in the populations for which its use has been suggested2 are limited.In the editorial "Pneumococcal Vaccine: To Use or Not" (1981; 245:498), Fraser and Broome have pointed out the shortcomings of the available information and urged randomized prospective trials to settle some of the unresolved questions of efficacy. One such study has recently been initiated by the Veterans Administration Cooperative Studies Program. Patients older than 55 years or with chronic renal, hepatic, cardiac, or pulmonary diseases, diabetes mellitus, or chronic alcoholism at five VA Medical Centers will be asked


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