Supplementary memorandum submitted by
UK Vaccine Industry Group
The UK Vaccine Industry Group (UVIG) is pleased
to have given evidence to the Committee and welcomes the opportunity
to provide additional information that will help inform further
The Committee asked for a further breakdown
of vaccines licensed and available in the UK yet potentially underused;
and an indication of future developments for the UK market.
Vaccines continue to rank amongst the most important
contributions to public health in the UK. The previously immense
burden of morbidity and mortality associated with "common"
diseases is now rare. However, UVIG believes that more can be
achieved by an overall programme to fight infectious diseases
that includes promoting greater access to licensed vaccines, planning
more thoroughly for the introduction of new vaccines, targeting
previously unmanageable infectious diseases, and undertaking effective
dialogue with stakeholders.
A summary of vaccines licensed and available
in the UK but currently under-utilised is attached (Annex A).
Development and implementation of policy to ensure greater uptake
of these vaccines amongst the at-risk groups will deliver public
health benefits and have the potential to promote more effective
use of NHS resources.
Furthermore, with reference to future developments
all seven UVIG member companies have research and development
programmes covering a wide range of disease areas. These R&D
activities are undertaken at research facilities in the UK and
abroad. Currently UVIG member companies are responsible for 72
separate vaccine R&D projects (Annex B).
UVIG believes that there is an opportunity to
realise the benefits from this R&D programme as part of the
public health agenda. The process by which policy is developed
and implemented must be reviewed to create a more transparent,
consultative and inclusive environment through which industry,
and other stakeholders, can deliver more efficiently and effectively
against agreed priorities.
In the experience of UVIG member companies,
messages from the Department of Health relating to priorities
and timings are inconsistent, non-consultative and likely to change
at relatively short notice. This hinders greatly the R&D and
manufacturing planning process for individual UVIG member companies
that in turn can adversely effect implementation of vaccination
policy in the UK.
There is one notable exception. The Department
of Health and the industry worked together, effectively and efficiently,
to develop the conjugate Meningitis C vaccine and implement policy.
UVIG urges the Committee to recommend that this experience should
become standard practice in terms of an Industry Policy for the
Department of Health.
Once again, UVIG was pleased to have been able
to contribute to this important review. If you or your colleagues
have any additional queries or would like further clarification
on this or any matter please do not hesitate to contact me.
Ian Kingston, Chair
UK Vaccine Industry Group
31 March 2003
SUMMARY OF VACCINES LICENSED AND AVAILABLE
IN THE UK BUT UNDER-UTILISED AMONG THE AT-RISK POPULATIONS
|Disease||Current UK Policy
|Hepatitis B||Defined risk groups
||<50per cent|| Profile of the disease and importance of vaccination increasing, eg Sexual Health Strategy and Getting Ahead of the Curve. |
WHO recommended universal vaccination policy to be implemented by 1997.
A JCVI sub-committee is currently re-considering policy options for the UK.
defined adult risk groups
|~70 per cent;
<50 per cent
| Coverage of at-risk groups <65 years is low because individuals are harder to identify.|
Low coverage rates compounded by exclusion from primary care incentive schemes that apply to the over 65s.
Many of the at-risk groups would be covered by reducing the lower age limit for universal vaccination to 50 years. The USA has now implemented this lower age limit.
|Pneumococcal||Over 75s; defined adult risk groups
||20-40 per cent|| As for influenza, coverage of at risk groups low due to difficulties in identification, and exclusion from primary care incentive schemes.|
|Strep pneumococcal||Very specific in infants (conjugatge vaccine).|
Adult risk groups (polysaccharide vaccine)
|N/a|| Under consideration for inclusion in the infant schedule.|
Implementation of policy to protect adult risk groups very variable between the four nations.
|Varicella||None published. JCVI recommendation referring to healthcare workers and contacts of vulnerable groups available in public minutes of the May 2002 meeting.
||Negligible|| Date of DH publication of the JCVI recommendation not available.|
SUMMARY OF VACCINES IN DEVELOPMENT
This annex includes an extract of the "PharmaProjects"
database showing recorded prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines
in development at the per-clinical, phase I, II, or III stages.
The PharmaProjects database gives a good overview of the
extent of vaccines research by disease target, sponsoring company
or organisation, and phase of development.
A numeric summary of the projects included shows a significant
role of UVIG member companies at all stages of development but
particularly in later stage (Phase III) projects.
|Phase III||Phase II
|Of which funded by a UVIG member company
|UVIG per cent||43 per cent
||37 per cent||29 per cent||17 per cent
||24 per cent|
Source: PharmaProjects February 2003.