Recent data concerning influenza-related hospitalization rates, deaths, outpatient visits, and drug consumption in otherwise healthy children have shown that childhood influenza is significantly more important than once believed. In addition to its clinical importance, influenza in healthy children can have substantial socioeconomic consequences for children, whose everyday activities are disrupted and who lose a significant number of school days, and their household contacts, who are frequently affected by similar illnesses. An overall evaluation of these data show that influenza in infants and children is a significant clinical and socioeconomic problem and that healthy children appear to be candidates for yearly vaccinations. Global evaluation of the impact of influenza in pediatric patients indicates that influenza vaccination should be more widely used than is usually recommended. All of the data regarding influenza vaccines indicate that the immunogenicity of the available preparations is good, and that they are safe, well-tolerated, and significantly effective in preventing influenza illness and its complications in both high-risk and otherwise healthy children. Moreover, the economic data indicate that universal childhood influenza vaccination is a low-cost preventive intervention that provides health benefits during epidemic and pandemic periods, supporting an extensive use of vaccination in childhood.
The global state of influenza in children / Esposito, Susanna Maria Roberta; P., Marchisio; N., Principi. - In: THE PEDIATRIC INFECTIOUS DISEASE JOURNAL. - ISSN 0891-3668. - 27:11 Supplement(2008), pp. S149-S153. [10.1097/INF.0b013e31818a542b]