The Gavi global alliance for vaccines and immunization group signed a $5 million advance purchase commitment on Wednesday to buy a vaccine being developed by Merck to protect against future outbreaks of the deadly Ebola virus.
By World Health Organization
For a century, epidemics of meningococcal A meningitis, a bacterial infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord, have swept across 26 countries in sub-Saharan Africa killing and disabling young people every year. The disease is highly feared on the continent; it can kill or cause severe brain damage within hours.
By Charles Wiysonge
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University
Africa has made incredible improvements immunising children against preventable diseases such as polio, pneumonia, diphtheria, measles and tuberculosis. By 2014, 77% of the continent’s children were immunised. Compared to 1980, when only 5% of African children were vaccinated, this is a drastic improvement.
By Dr. Samuel Kargbo
Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Sierra Leone
As a medical doctor responsible for the health of mothers and children in the nation of Sierra Leone, there is one job I never expected to have: chief undertaker.
By Emily Loud
Recent research suggests that in many places the low social status of women acts as a significant barrier to children being vaccinated. Lack of access to education, low income and limited decision-making power all play a role. But why is this, and what can we do about it?
By Katrin DeCamp, Web, Manager & Senior Communications Specialist, USAID's Maternal and Child Survival Program and Robert Steinglass, Immunization Team Leader, Maternal and Child Survival Program
At month's end, African health and finance ministers will meet in Ethiopia for theMinisterial Conference on Immunization in Africa. Alongside technical experts and policymakers, their focus will be expanding access to vaccines, knowing 1 in 5 African children still don't receive all necessary immunizations.
By Joel Lamstein, President, John Snow, Inc. and World Education
Vaccines are among the most effective and inexpensive ways to fight infectious diseases and help people stay healthy. While there are a few people in affluent societies and troubled corners of the world who distrust vaccines, the history cannot be more clear: vaccines work. Unfortunately, not everyone has access to them.
By Robert Steinglass, Director of JSI’s Immunization Center
In preparation for the upcoming ministerial conference on immunization, read JSI's five recommended journal articles to review before the event.
Thumbnail photo courtesy of Translieu/David Mugithi
Supply chains play a critical role in improving health, saving lives and reducing under-five mortality. What steps do we have to take to make these important goals a reality?
by Heidi Lasher, project coordinator for immunization supply chain advocacy at PATH.
Vaccines are sometimes called the backbone of the public health system. They are the first line of defense against infectious diseases, highly cost-effective, and meant to be available at every health facility, everywhere in the world, to protect health and save lives. But the power of vaccines is lost if we don’t have the ways and means to deliver them safely and efficiently to those who need them most.
by Dr. John Boslego, Former Director of PATH Vaccine Development Program
Immunization is one of the most powerful health interventions ever introduced. Every year, the World Health Organization estimates, vaccines save between 2 and 3 million children from killers such as polio, measles,pneumonia, and rotavirus diarrhea.
by Mark Alderson, Director of the pneumococcal vaccine and the polyvalent meningococcal vaccine projects in the Vaccine Development Program, PATH.
Fifteen years ago, roughly two million children under age five died from pneumonia annually. Today, that number is down by more than half, thanks to improved prevention and treatment interventions and their growing presence in traditionally underserved countries.
by Dr Jean-Marie Okwo-Bele, Director of the Department of Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals
Ten days and more than 11 million children vaccinated against measles and rubella – that’s 764 children reached every minute. These numbers continue to impress me when I think about last year’s game-changing immunization programmes that reached children often missed due to humanitarian emergencies.