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Infection

, Volume 44, Issue 6, pp 781–787 | Cite as

Measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella seroprevalence in refugees in Germany in 2015

  • Alexandra JablonkaEmail author
  • Christine Happle
  • Ulrike Grote
  • Benjamin Thomas Schleenvoigt
  • Annika Hampel
  • Christian Dopfer
  • Gesine Hansen
  • Reinhold Ernst Schmidt
  • Georg M. N. Behrens
Brief Report

Abstract

Purpose

The current extent of migration poses emerging socio–economic and humanitarian challenges. Little is known on vaccination rates in migrants entering Europe, and the implementation of guidelines for serological testing and vaccination of refugees are pending.

Methods

We conducted seroprevalence analyses for measles, mumps, rubella and varicella (MMRV) in 678 refugees coming to Germany during the current crisis.

Results

The mean age of refugees was 28.8±11.4 years, and 76.1 % of subjects were male. Overall, IgG seronegativity was 7.4 % (95 % CI 5.5-9.6) for measles, 10.2 % (95 % CI 8.0-12.5) for mumps, 2.2 % (95 % CI 1.2-3.4) for rubella, and 3.3 % (95 % CI 1.9-4.9) for varicella. Seropositivity rates were age-dependent with considerably low values in children. For example, overall MMR immunity was 90.9 % (95 % CI 88.8-93.1), but only 73.1 % of minor aged refugees displayed complete seroprevalence against all three diseases, and only 68.9 % of children and adolescents were completely MMRV immune.

Conclusion

Our initial data set suggests overall satisfactory MMRV immunity in adult migrants coming to Europe, but the observed low MMRV seroprevalences in refugee children support thorough and prompt vaccination of young migrants entering Europe. Taken together, our data set underlines the urgent need to implement and validate vaccination guidelines for refugee care in the current crisis.

Keywords

Vaccination Refugees Measles Mumps Rubella Varicella 

Abbreviations

EU

European Union

IgG

Immunoglobulin G

MMRV

Mumps/measles/rubella/varicella

VPD

Vaccine-preventable diseases

Notes

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

None to specify.

Supplementary material

15010_2016_926_MOESM1_ESM.docx (151 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 151 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alexandra Jablonka
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Christine Happle
    • 3
    • 4
  • Ulrike Grote
    • 5
  • Benjamin Thomas Schleenvoigt
    • 6
  • Annika Hampel
    • 7
  • Christian Dopfer
    • 3
    • 4
  • Gesine Hansen
    • 3
    • 4
  • Reinhold Ernst Schmidt
    • 1
    • 2
  • Georg M. N. Behrens
    • 1
    • 2
    • 8
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Immunology and RheumatologyHannover Medical SchoolHannoverGermany
  2. 2.German Center for Infection ResearchHannover-BraunschweigGermany
  3. 3.Department of Pediatrics, Neonatology and AllergologyHannover Medical SchoolHannoverGermany
  4. 4.German Center for Lung Research, BREATHHannoverGermany
  5. 5.Department of Hematology and OncologyHannover Medical SchoolHannoverGermany
  6. 6.Center for Infectious Diseases and Infection ControlJena University HospitalJenaGermany
  7. 7.Department for Anaesthesiology and Surgical Intensive Care MedicineHospital WolfsburgWolfsburgGermany
  8. 8.Niedersachsen Network on NeuroinfectiologyHannoverGermany

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