Expert consultation on pertussis
This report presents the outcomes of a technical workshop, organised by ECDC, to seek a consensus on a common strategy to reduce the public health burden caused by pertussis in the EU/EEA countries.
Pertussis is a bacterial respiratory infection caused by Bordetella pertussis . Pertussis is a highly contagious disease with a reproductive number (R0) of 15–17. The most severe symptoms occur in infants and young children whereas the disease is usually milder in adolescents and young adults, who constitute a reservoir and are a source of spread to young children. Pertussis remains endemic worldwide and tends to be a cyclic disease, peaking every 3–5 years. The most effective preventive measure is immunisation and, in developed countries, acellular vaccines are given usually in combination with other antigens.
Over the last 20 years, the epidemiology of the disease has remarkably changed. There has been a shift observed from mainly paediatric cases (normally children <10 years of age) towards adolescents, adults and children too young to have been vaccinated or to have completed the primary series.
Mortality rates are still unacceptable, both in developing and developed countries. Despite the relatively high global vaccination coverage (82%) among infants receiving three doses of pertussis-containing vaccines, it is estimated1 that in 2008 about 16 million cases of pertussis occurred worldwide, and 195 000 children died from the disease.
Since 2011, increases in the number of pertussis cases have been repeatedly reported in different regions of the world, even in those with sustained high vaccination coverage. In the countries of the European Union/European Economic Area (EU/EEA), the situation is evolving similarly, with many countries observing a growing number of cases, mostly in very young infants, adolescents and adults. In summer 2012, the Netherlands, concerned about the growing number of cases and evolving epidemiology of the disease, requested the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) to elaborate a common strategy to respond to the threat. Similar requests were made by other European countries. Therefore, ECDC organised a technical workshop in Barcelona, Spain, in November 2012 to seek a consensus on a common strategy to reduce the public health burden caused by pertussis in the EU/EEA countries. The agenda of the meeting can be found in the Annex.
External quality assessment for the detection of Bordetella pertussis by PCR, 2018
11 Jan 2019 - This report presents the results of the second European Pertussis Laboratory Surveillance Network (EUPert-LabNet) EQA scheme for Bordetella pertussis PCR funded by ECDC on behalf of EUPert-LabNet. The EQA study was conducted between February and March 2018.
External quality assessment scheme for Bordetella pertussis serology 2016
6 Feb 2018 - This external quality assessment (EQA) to assess the ability of national reference laboratories from EU/EEA Member States to correctly perform laboratory serodiagnostic tests for pertussis was a collaborative study organised from February to April 2016.
Rapid Risk Assessment: Shortage of acellular pertussis-containing vaccines and impact on immunisation programmes in the EU/EEA - 1st update, 3 February 2016
3 Feb 2016 - This Rapid Risk Assessment focuses on acellular pertussis-containing combination vaccines used in national vaccination programmes in the EU/EEA Member States.