Francisco Sanz, MD, PhD, on Prevention of Community-Acquired Pneumonia via Vaccination


In this podcast, Francisco Sanz, MD, PhD, talks about his session at CHEST 2021, during which he discussed preventing community-acquired pneumonia through vaccinating against pneumococcal disease, influenza, and COVID-19.

Additional Resource:


Francisco Sanz, MD, PhD, is a pulmonologist at the Hospital General Universitario de Valencia in Spain.



Amanda Balbi: Hello, and welcome to another installment of Podcasts360. I’m your moderator Amanda Balbi with Consultant360.

Our guest today is Dr Francisco Sanz, MD, PhD, who is a pulmonologist at the Hospital General Universitario de Valencia in Spain. He joins us to discuss his research paper “Community-Acquired Pneumonia: Using the Guidelines to Improve Our Outcomes,” which he recently presented at CHEST 2021.

Let’s listen in as he answers our burning questions.

Can you give us a brief overview of your research?

Francisco Sanz: Part of my research has been based on analyzing the data on the effectiveness of the influenza of vaccines in patients over 65 years of age.

We have concluded that although the vaccine effectiveness is less than 50%, the influenza vaccine modies the severity of the presentation of pneumonia and reduces the need for hospital admission in the elderly population.

Amanda Balbi: So, let's talk a little bit more about the clinical takeaway messages. What were your study findings, and how could practitioners implement those in practice?

Francisco Sanz: Yes, from my point of view, the most important point is that clinicians should know that the presentation of pneumonia can be prevented with the use of vaccines. At the present time, we have vaccines that can protect against infection by influenza virus, pneumococcus, and SAR-CoV-2 virus.

But the effectiveness of vaccines can be variable. It is known that patients who have been vaccinated and contract the disease have less severity and fewer complications.

Nowadays it's very important to advise our patients, especially those with chronic respiratory diseases, on the need for vaccination against influenza, pneumococcus, and SAR-CoV-2 to avoid these 3 causes of mortality from these preventable respiratory infectious diseases.

Amanda Balbi: Great. Was this a review during COVID-19 or before COVID-19?

Francisco Sanz: One part of the talk I gave was there before COVID-19. I talked about the effectiveness of the influenza and pneumococcal vaccines, and the other part of the talk is about the SAR-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness.

Amanda Balbi: I actually just read something today about how influenza has raised—it’s up 20% vs last year. Is there anything to comment on about that and the importance of influenza vaccine?

Francisco Sanz: Influenza vaccination is very important for the population with comorbidities, but we have to take [into account] that the effectiveness can vary from year to year. For example, last year, we had no influenza outbreak, so we don't know what will happen this influenza season, so we have to wait and be prepared and be protected with the vaccination.

Amanda Balbi: Absolutely. What is your next step in this research? What do you plan on studying next?

Francisco Sanz: Yes, well, there are many interesting steps to investigate. For example, will we be the best effectiveness of the influenza vaccination in this position. It’s very important to know. We will probably have a big surprise about that.

It also very interesting to know if a variety of pneumococcal pneumonia can be modified after a serotype replacement caused by the conjugate vaccines. That is a phenomenon that has been observed several years ago, especially in the [indecipherable 4:00] population.

And in the field of COVID-19, it will be interesting to know the duration of protection of the third dose of the vaccine and the development of the next generation of COVID-19 vaccines. Probably next year we will have a lot of information about that.

Amanda Balbi: Yeah, that's really something to look forward to. I'm looking forward to it. So, thank you so much for joining me today and answering my questions.

Francisco Sanz: Okay, thank you very much. 

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