Effect of Pediatric Influenza Vaccination on Antibiotic Resistance, England and Wales

Chungman Chae; Nicholas G. Davies; Mark Jit; Katherine E. Atkins


Emerging Infectious Diseases. 2020;26(1):138-142. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Vaccines against viral infections have been proposed to reduce prescribing of antibiotics and thereby help control resistant bacterial infections. However, by combining published data sources, we predict that pediatric live attenuated influenza vaccination in England and Wales will not substantially reduce antibiotic consumption or adverse health outcomes associated with antibiotic resistance.


Antibiotic use drives the spread of antibiotic resistance. A considerable proportion of antibiotic prescriptions are prescribed unnecessarily for conditions that are either self-limiting or nonbacterial in etiology.[1] Because influenza is often treated inappropriately with antibiotics, expanding access to influenza vaccines has been proposed as a means of reducing unnecessary prescribing and preventing resistant infections.[2]

In 2013, England and Wales began rolling out the live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) for 2–16-year-old children.[3] Here, we estimate the potential effect on antibiotic prescribing and antibiotic resistance.