(HealthDay News) — More than one-third of adult U.S. HIV patients miss opportunities to initiate hepatitis B vaccination, according to a study published online Dec. 26 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
John Weiser, MD, MPH., from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues estimated the prevalence of hepatitis B vaccination among 18,089 adults receiving HIV medical care and participating in the Medical Monitoring Project (2009–2012).
The researchers found that at the beginning of the surveillance period, 44.2% of U.S. HIV patients were candidates to initiate vaccination vs 36.7% at the end of the surveillance period. However, at the end of the surveillance period, only 9.6% of the candidates were vaccinated, while 7.5% had no documented vaccination but had documented infection or immunity and 82.9% remained candidates for vaccination. Vaccination was higher among patients at facilities funded by the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP), with 12.5% vaccinated during the study period vs 3.7% at facilities not funded by RWHAP.
“Meeting goals for hepatitis B elimination will require increased vaccination of HIV patients in all practice settings, particularly at facilities not funded by RWHAP,” the authors write.