The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that, prior to the launch of the infant HBV immunization program, about 33,000 American children of non-infected mothers acquired hepatitis B by the age of ten.
It is recommended that newborns whose mothers are HBsAg-positive receive hepatitis B immune globulin (HBIG)-a preparation of serum containing high levels of antibodies to hepatitis B-as well as HBV within 12 hours of birth.
Although controversy over the safety of HBV resulted in congressional hearings in 1999, the National Academy of Science's Institute of Medicine, as well as other authorities, considers HBV to be safe.
Children should not receive HBV if they are allergic to baker's yeast or thimerosal, are allergic to any other components in a combination vaccine, or have had a previous allergic reaction to HBV.
Hepatitis B immune globulin-HBIG, a blood serum preparation containing anti-hepatitis-B antibodies (anti-HBs) that is administered along with HBV to children born to hepatitis-B-infected mothers.