The hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccination schedule in Libya follows international recommendations (1st dose at birth, 2nd after 1 month and 3rd after 6 months). This research aimed to evaluate the long-term protection of the HBV immunization programme in Tripoli and to determine the best age to administer booster doses. Serum levels of hepatitis B surface antigen were determined in 277 randomly selected children aged 1-12 years. The response to HBV vaccine in 1-3-year-olds was 93.2%, but this declined with age and at 7-9 years after initial vaccination only 53.1% of children had protective titres (≥ 10 mIU/mL). No significant differences between males and females in antibody persistence or response to vaccine were observed. We recommend continuing the HBV vaccination programme and that a booster dose be given to 6-year-old children to ensure maximum protection during the period of school entry and beyond.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Eastern Mediterranean Health Journal|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|