Volume 61, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645


Japanese encephalitis (JE) is an endemic disease in Taiwan. A mass vaccination program of children against JE was first implemented in 1968. Along with general improvements in various aspects of living conditions over the years, the program has brought JE well under control. The main characteristics of JE epidemiology in Taiwan in the past 3 decades are as follows. The transmission mode remains unchanged-that is, the amplification stage of the virus in pigs is followed by a human epidemic each year. The frequency of JE incidence has dropped significantly. The incidence rate of confirmed cases was 2.05 per 100,000 in 1967, the highest in record, and merely 0.03 per 100,000 in 1997. Confirmed cases occur sporadically all over the island. The peak of the epidemic season has shifted from August in the 1960s to June since the 1980s. The age distribution of confirmed cases has shifted gradually from mainly children to adults. Vaccine efficacy for those having received more than 2 doses of the vaccine is estimated to be about 85%.


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