Online Program

Influenza-like illness among pregnant Chinese women in Hong Kong

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Valerie Wing Yu Wong, RN MPH, School of Nursing, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Daniel Yee Tak Fong, PhD, School of Nursing, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Marie Tarrant, RN MPH PhD, School of Nursing, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong
The World Health Organization recently recommended pregnant women as the highest priority group for the seasonal influenza vaccination. It is therefore crucial to monitor its progress by assessing the burden of influenza. The prevalence of influenza among pregnant women and its associated maternal outcomes have rarely been addressed and increasing evidence suggests that their burden of influenza is affected by the underlying medical conditions. This study recruited 2670 new mothers during the summer of 2011 and used a validated questionnaire to assess the demographic background, underlying chronic illnesses, respiratory symptoms during pregnancy and pregnancy outcomes. Multivariate logistic regression was used to explore (1) the association between pre-existing chronic illnesses and the risk of ILI/ARI and (2) the link between ILI/ARI and adverse maternal outcomes. The prevalence of ILI and ARI was 11.5% and 34.9% during the 2011 influenza season. Only 1.8% of participants had received seasonal influenza vaccine during pregnancy and 4% had pre-existing chronic illnesses. Both chronic and respiratory illnesses were significantly associated with the risk of ARI but not ILI. There was no association between ILI/ ARI and adverse maternal outcomes. This is one of a few studies reporting the prevalence of ILI among pregnant women which is essential, as a baseline, to monitor the benefits of the future influenza program. Our study showed no significant association between existing chronic illnesses among pregnant women and their risk of ILI, suggesting that pregnancy is an independent risk factor for influenza and is not strongly affected by underlying chronic illnesses.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related education
Public health or related nursing
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Assess the prevalence of influenza-like illness (ILI) and acute respiratory symptoms (ARI) among pregnant Chinese women in Hong Kong Identify the association between the presence of ILI or ARI with the risk of adverse maternal outcomes Explore the possible association between pre-existing chronic illnesses and the risk of ILI or ARI among pregnant women

Keyword(s): Pregnancy Outcomes, Communicable Disease

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a registered nurse and graduated from the Master of Public Health. My research interests are the efficacy of hand hygiene in controlling influenza transmission and the burden of influenza among pregnant women.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.