Stakeholder Perceptions About Group B Streptococcus Disease and Potential for Maternal Vaccination in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

Clinical Infectious Diseases Volume 74, Issue Supplement 1, pp. S80–S87
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To inform the World Health Organisation’s full value of vaccine assessment for group B Streptococcus (GBS) vaccines, a rapid literature appraisal was conducted to inform the operationalisation of maternal GBS vaccination. We found limited published information on stakeholder perceptions of the public health importance of GBS disease and vaccination, and we therefore undertook a multicountry survey.

An online survey was conducted in late 2019 to collect information on stakeholders’ awareness of GBS disease and the priority accorded to vaccination. The survey was distributed by email to 395 representatives of national pediatric, gynecology, and obstetrics associations, national immunisation technical advisory groups (NITAGs), national regulatory agencies, academia, and United Nations organisations.

Among 101 survey respondents from 66 countries, 36% were pediatricians, 25% obstetricians/gynecologists, 21% immunisation specialists, and 18% other public health specialists. More than half (58%) of respondents reported being familiar with GBS disease as a public health problem; familiarity decreased by country income level. Knowledge of GBS disease was greatest in the Americas (68%) and Europe (66%) and lowest in Asia (13%–38%). Perception of GBS disease as a public health problem was highest among pediatricians (71%) and lowest among public health policy makers and NITAG members (30%) across country groupings. Approximately half of respondents (49%) considered the introduction of a GBS vaccine as a priority.

The information obtained will inform the appropriate packaging and presentation of information to address stakeholder perceptions and promote evidence-based decision making on GBS vaccination.

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