- Abstract Evaluation of the effect of new conjugate vaccines on nasopharyngeal carriage of Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) has been based on simple comparisons of the prevalence of carriage in vaccinees and controls. However, the definition and measurement of vaccine efficacy should be based on knowledge of the actual mechanism of the vaccine's effect. According to current knowledge, conjugate vaccines affect acquisition. We propose a simple-to-use method to measure vaccine efficacy against serotype-specific acquisition that needs only cross-sectional measurements of carriage. We demonstrate the use of the method by application to a data set where it is also possible to estimate efficacy against acquisition from longitudinal measurements.