Perinatal Hepatitis B

The Perinatal Hepatitis B Prevention Program works to identify the hepatitis B status of pregnant women, to communicate with those at high risk for transmitting hepatitis B infection to their infants, and to ensure access to hepatitis B vaccine and hepatitis B immune globulin. The main goal is to reduce the incidence of hepatitis B in infants born to women with hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection in a pregnant woman poses a serious risk to her infant at birth. Without post-exposure immunoprophylaxis, up to 45% of infants born to HBV-infected mothers in the United States will become infected. Up to 90% of those infected will develop chronic, life-long HBV infection, approximately one-fourth of whom will eventually die from chronic liver disease. Perinatal HBV transmission can be prevented by identifying HBV-infected (i.e. hepatitis B surface antigen [HBsAg]-positive) pregnant women, and providing hepatitis B immune globulin and hepatitis B vaccine to their infants within 12 hours of birth.

All pregnant women should be tested during an early prenatal visit with EACH pregnancy, even if tested before or previously vaccinated. If a woman tests positive for hepatitis B during her pregnancy, the local District Office of the Vermont Department of Health will be notified, as will the perinatal hepatitis B coordinator who notifies the hospital. They will help make sure that the woman and her baby receive the proper education, medication and vaccination to prevent the spread of hepatitis B during the birth.

The universal birth dose of hepatitis B vaccine for ALL infants is recommended by CDC.

Helpful Documents for Health Care Providers
Title Description Download Date
Algorithm Algorithm for health care providers to follow to prevent perinatal hepatitis B View 11/09/2016
Testing Interpretation Interpretation of Hepatitis B Serologic Test Results View 11/09/2016
Hospital Information What Hospitals Need to Know View 11/09/2016
Case Management Components of Case Management to Prevent Perinatal Hepatitis B Virus Infection View 11/09/2016
Hepatitis B Reporting

By law, incidences of hepatitis B infection must be reported to the Vermont Department of Health, including of women who are pregnant and who have a positive test for hepatitis B. To report a suspected or confirmed case of hepatitis B in a pregnant woman, contact the perinatal hepatitis B coordinator at the Health Department's Infectious Disease Epidemiology Program at 802-863-7240 or 800-640-4374 (within Vermont only).

Hepatitis B Vaccine
Treatment Schedule for Babies (at High risk for) Born to Hepatitis B+ Mothers

Within 12 hours after birth the baby will receive Hepatitis B Immunoglobulin (HBIG) and the first shot of the Hep B vaccine series. The baby will receive the other two shots of the vaccine series at one month and six months after birth.

HBIG and Hep B vaccine administered within 12 hours of birth (using different sites, usually each lateral thigh for injection).

Dose

 Single Antigen Vaccine

 Pediarix

1

Birth

Not to be used < 6 weeks of age
Use monovalent HepB vaccine at birth

2

1 -2 months

2 months

3

6 months

4 months

4

N/A

6 months

Blood work (post vaccine serology) three months after the last dose of vaccine to determine status of the infant.