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News: ACIP guidelines address vaccination during pregnancy

A new report may help standardize procedures for vaccination during pregnancy.

A new report-Guiding Principles for Development of ACIP Recommendations for Vaccination During Pregnancy and Breast-Feeding-approved by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) in March-may help standardize procedures for policy formulation and presentation of the rationale and recommendations for the vaccination of pregnant and breastfeeding women, according to the May 30 issue of the MMWR.

The ACIP Workgroup on Vaccines During Pregnancy and BreastFeeding noted that standardizing such procedures has been historically challenging because of a lack of solid evidence. The new document addresses five key topics: guidance for structure of the background section; guidance for structure and language of recommendations; clarification of the definitions of precautions and contraindications in the context of pregnant and breastfeeding women; suggestions for approaches to policy decision-making in the absence of adequate data; and description of a consistent process to gather expert opinion. It also offers a series of process suggestions.

Guiding principles for development of ACIP recommendations for vaccination during pregnancy and breastfeeding. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2008;57(21);580. Available online at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5721a3.htm.