Spreeha Choudhury and Richard H. Hughes, IV, attorneys in the Health Care & Life Sciences practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, co-authored an article in Health Affairs, titled “Ensure Equity and Feasibility in Updating Meningococcal Vaccine Recommendations.”
Following is an excerpt:
In October 2023, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) unveiled a proposal to reassess the adolescent schedule for meningococcal vaccines. As a key part of this reexamination, the ACIP indicated its intent to address several critical questions. This included a suggestion to completely eliminate the current routine recommendation for 11–12-year-olds to receive the MenACWY vaccine or to modify the recommendation to a shared clinical decision-making approach. Additionally, the ACIP indicated its interest in exploring strategies to optimize the integration of meningococcal vaccination schedules, aiming to streamline administration and increase feasibility.
In this article, we contend that removing the routine recommendation or transitioning to shared clinical decision making might contradict the ACIP’s stated objectives of feasibility. In fact, in addressing the query of improving feasibility, it is crucial for the ACIP to acknowledge the significant impact of school-entry mandates on the uptake, implementation, and equitable distribution of adolescent vaccines—if it is not already doing so. Such considerations are essential for a comprehensive and effective vaccination strategy.