Infectious Disease Epidemiology Program

Airborne and Direct Contact Diseases - Strep pneumoniae

General Information:

Pneumococcal disease is caused by the Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria. Pneumococcal disease may cause serious illness if it is in the lungs, blood, or in the lining of the brain and spinal cord. Pneumococcal disease is also a common cause of ear infections. The disease is spread from person to person by coughing or sneezing. Children under 2, people 65 years of age and older and people with certain chronic medical problems or weakened immune systems are most likely to get the disease.

There are two vaccines available for pneumococcal disease, pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV 13) and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV 23). Please see the vaccine information statements (VIS) below.

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