Despite nearly a century of use, the BCG vaccine continues to be controversial, with known variations in BCG substrains and vaccine efficacy. Because vaccination policies and practices have varied substantially across time and countries, we created this first searchable, online database of global BCG vaccination policy and practices. This interactive website provides detailed information on current and past BCG policies and practices for over 180 countries. The Atlas is designed to be a useful resource for clinicians, policymakers and researchers alike, providing information that may be helpful for better interpretation of TB diagnostics as well as design of new TB vaccines. For example, BCG practices can impact the results of the tuberculin skin test, the most widely used test for latent TB infection, and past BCG policies and practices may be as or more important than current policy in interpreting TST results in adults or in deciding when alternative tests for latent TB infection such as interferon-g release assays (IGRAs) may be preferable to TST. If novel TB vaccines complement the existing BCG, it would be relevant to know what previous BCG vaccination individuals have had, how many and at what ages prior to administering novel ‘booster vaccines’. In summary, the BCG World Atlas provides the TB community with a useful resource through an open-access and easy-to-use website.
For additional information, please see: Zwerling A et al. The BCG World Atlas: A Database of Global BCG Vaccination Policies and Practices. PLoS Medicine 2011.
If information for your country is missing, we encourage you to complete a very short questionnaire (should take only about 5 minutes to complete) concerning your country’s BCG vaccination policy. Please take the time to complete the questionnaire and contribute to the creation of a valuable resource for physicians and patients in your country.