NJIN Monthly Newsletter
March 2022
In this edition of the NJIN monthly newsletter, we discuss several vaccine-related topics, including an opportunity to earn continuing medical education credits, a recent discovery that may lead to a Strep A vaccine, and several other resources that can aid you in immunizing across the lifespan.
Featured Articles and Resources
COVID-19 Vaccines Protect Adults on Dialysis Against Infection, Severe Disease
Adults on dialysis who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 are 69% less likely to get infected than those who receive the treatment for failing kidneys but are unvaccinated, a study published Wednesday by the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology found.

The data showed that they also have an 83% lower risk of developing severe illness from the virus than unvaccinated people on dialysis.

People in the study were considered fully vaccinated if they had received both doses of two-shot Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech products.

Researchers said that there were no significant differences in vaccine effectiveness among age groups, type of dialysis, or vaccine.

"Governments and health care providers prioritized patients on maintenance dialysis for early COVID-19 vaccination in many countries, including the U.S and Canada. This strategy was correct," study co-author Dr. Matthew Oliver said in a press release.
Immune Discovery Could Aid in Strep A
Vaccine Development
Researchers have made a discovery that could aid in developing a vaccine for a common cause of children's sore throats.

The research, led by the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MCRI), and published in Nature Communications, has identified an immune system signature associated with acute pharyngitis (strep throat).

MCRI researchers Dr. Joshua Osowicki, Professor Andrew Steer, Associate Professor Paul Licciardi, Associate Professor Daniel Pellicci contributed to the study, which aimed to advance vaccine research into Strep A by better understanding the immune response to the bacteria.

Strep A causes at least 750 million infections and more than 500,000 deaths each year. The bacterium is the most frequent cause of pharyngitis (sore throat) and a very common cause of skin infections in children. These infections can lead to dangerous complications such as kidney damagerheumatic fever, and rheumatic heart disease.
COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy:
Convincing the Ambivalent May Be Key
A new study, published in the Journal of Community Health, emphasizes the importance of outreach to people who have mixed feelings about getting vaccinated.

The study looked at the attitudes of participants aged 55 years and older about vaccines at different stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The researchers accessed data from the COVID-19 Coping Study to identify people in the United States who were either receptive, ambivalent, or against getting vaccinated against the disease.

To date, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that 75% of the US adult population is fully vaccinated, having received two doses of an mRNA vaccine or one dose of a single-dose vaccine.

However, though studies indicate that receiving a booster dose reduces severe illness by 92%, the CDC reports that only 47.1% of US adults who have completed their initial single-dose vaccine or two-dose mRNA vaccine series have received at least one of these additional booster doses.
Childhood Vaccination Toolkit for Clinicians
COVID-19 disrupted both in-person learning and routine well-child visits for many children over the last year. As a result, too many children have fallen behind on receiving recommended vaccines.

CDC’s public sector vaccine ordering data show a 14% drop in 2020-2021 compared to 2019, and the measles vaccine is down by more than 20%.

Children need to get caught up now so that they are protected as they go back to in-person learning and summer camps. Healthcare providers can identify families whose children have missed doses and contact them to schedule appointments. Providers can also let families know what precautions are in place for the safe delivery of in-person services.
Adolescent Immunization Resource Guide
Vaccination is an essential part of keeping preteens and teens healthy and protected from serious diseases. However, some adolescent vaccination rates remain below Healthy People 2020 goals, leaving millions of adolescents vulnerable to serious health risks. As a result, Immunization Programs face substantial challenges as they work to develop and implement strategies to strengthen adolescent immunization delivery in their states, cities, and territories.

The AIM Adolescent Immunization Resource Guide characterizes a selection of the varied activities and strategies that Immunization Programs have employed to enhance and improve the delivery of immunizations to adolescents. These featured activities offer a menu of adolescent-focused strategies that Immunization Programs can adopt, adapt, or use as inspiration in planning or brainstorming exercises. Recognizing that Immunization Programs vary substantially in the resources available for adolescent immunization efforts and in their public health infrastructure, the resource guide offers activities at three levels.
COVID-19 Vaccination
Older Adults Toolkit
This toolkit has resources for organizations and people that want to help increase confidence in and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines among older adults. It includes information from the CDC and new, culturally tailored materials from the HHS COVID-19 public education campaign and its team of multicultural experts.  

This toolkit is also available in Spanish and can be accessed here.
Education Opportunities
NJIN's March Education:
COVID-19 Vaccine Update
Margaret "Meg" Fisher, MD, FAAP

Pediatric Infectious Disease Specialist
Special Adviser to the NJ Commissioner of Health
Please join the NJIN team in welcoming Dr. Fisher to our March General Membership meeting on March 16th, from 12:00 - 2:00 PM EST.
Dr. Fisher's presentation will include:

  • A brief overview of COVID-19
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Basics
  • Current infection and immunization rates in NJ
Please note:

Dr. Fisher's presentation will begin after the NJIN General Membership meeting's business portion has concluded. By clicking the button below, you will be registering for the General Membership meeting in its entirety.
Flu-Related CME Quizzes
Sponsored by Seqirus
Vaccine Spotlight
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Vaccine
What You Should Know:

Who Should Get the Vaccine?

  • Vaccination is recommended at ages 11–12 years. HPV vaccines can be given starting at age 9 years
  • Teens and young adults through age 26 years who didn't start or finish the HPV vaccine series also need HPV vaccination

Who Shouldn't Get the Vaccine?

  • They have ever had a life-threatening allergic reaction to any ingredient of an HPV vaccine or to a previous dose of HPV vaccine
  • They have an allergy to yeast (Gardasil and Gardasil 9)
  • They are pregnant

How Well Do These Vaccines Work?

  • Since HPV vaccination was first recommended in 2006, infections with HPV types that cause most HPV cancers and genital warts have dropped 88% among teen girls and 81% among young adult women.
  • Fewer teens and young adults are getting genital warts.
  • HPV vaccination has also reduced the number of cases of precancers of the cervix in young women.
  • The protection provided by HPV vaccines lasts a long time. People who received HPV vaccines were followed for at least about 12 years, and their protection against HPV has remained high with no evidence of decreasing over time.

What Are the Possible Side Effects?

  • Pain, redness, or swelling in the arm where the shot was given
  • Fever
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Fainting after any vaccine, including the HPV vaccine, is more common among adolescents than others
  • Headache or feeling tired
  • Nausea
  • Muscle or joint pain

To prevent fainting and injuries from fainting, adolescents should be seated or lying down during vaccination and for 15 minutes after getting the shot.

Very rarely, severe (anaphylactic) allergic reactions might occur after vaccination. People with severe allergies to any vaccine component should not receive that vaccine.