Pneumococcal vaccination coverage in individuals (16–59 years) with a newly diagnosed risk condition in Germany

Arijita Deb, Bélène Podmore, Rosemarie Barnett, Dominik Beier, Wolfgang Galetzka, Nawab Qizilbash, Dennis Haeckl, Timo Boellinger, Kelly D. Johnson, Thomas Weiss

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2 Citations (SciVal)


Despite recommendations from the German Standing Committee on Vaccination (STIKO), pneumococcal vaccination coverage remains low in vulnerable populations. This study estimated the pneumococcal vaccination coverage rate (VCR) and timing among individuals aged 16–59 years in Germany who were recommended to receive pneumococcal vaccination, according to STIKO.

A retrospective cohort analysis was conducted using the German InGef database. Individuals aged 16 to 59 years diagnosed with at least one “at-risk” (chronic disease) or “high-risk” (e.g., immunocompromising) condition considered to be at-risk of pneumococcal infection were identified at the time of first diagnosis, between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2018, and followed up until December 31, 2019. The percentage of cumulative pneumococcal VCR with 95% confidence interval (CI) was reported for each calendar year of follow-up.

There were 334,292 individuals followed for a median of 2.38 (interquartile range (IQR) 1.63–3.13) person years. For individuals aged 16–59 years diagnosed with an incident risk condition in 2016, pneumococcal VCR increased from 0.44% (95% CI 0.41–0.48) in 2016 to 1.24% (95% CI 1.18–1.30) in 2019. In 2019, VCRs were higher in individuals with high-risk conditions compared with at-risk conditions (2.24% (95% CI 2.09–2.40) vs. 0.90% (95% CI 0.85–0.96)). In 2019, VCRs were higher in individuals aged 50 to 59 years compared with individuals aged 16 to 49 years (2.25% (95% CI 2.10–2.41) vs. 0.90% (95% CI 0.84–0.96)). Similar trends were observed in individuals with newly diagnosed risk conditions identified in 2017 and in 2018. Older age, influenza vaccination and increasing number of risk conditions increased the likelihood of pneumococcal vaccination. Median time to vaccination from diagnosis of the risk condition was shorter for high-risk conditions (369.5 days (IQR 155.8–702.0)) compared to at-risk conditions (435.5 days (IQR 196.3–758.8)).

Despite recommendations from STIKO, pneumococcal vaccination coverage remains very low and with long delays in vulnerable individuals aged 16–59 in Germany. Further efforts are required to increase immunization levels and shorten time to vaccination among individuals 16–59 years of age developing conditions with higher susceptibility to pneumococcal infection.
Original languageEnglish
Article number753
Number of pages1
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Issue number1
Early online date28 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was sponsored and funded by Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA.


  • Claims data
  • Germany
  • PCV13
  • PPSV23
  • Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine
  • Pneumococcal disease
  • Pneumococcal vaccination
  • Vaccine coverage rate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases


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