As five African countries prepare to celebrate World Immunization Week (24-30 April) with the impending introduction of new vaccines, the GAVI Alliance is finalising plans to build on its successes with a major drive to increase access to vaccines and the impact of immunisation programmes by 2020.
This week, Angola and the Republic of Congo plan to begin protecting their children against severe diarrhoea with the rotavirus vaccine while Tanzania expects to begin a demonstration project to protect girls from the leading cause of cervical cancer with the human papillomavirus vaccine. Next week, Madagascar plans to also introduce rotavirus vaccine and Togo expects to undertake a dual launch of rotavirus and pneumococcal conjugate vaccines.
While these launches are taking place, the GAVI Alliance is preparing for a key meeting to be held on the 20th of May in Brussels, where the Alliance will set out the significantly increased impact that can be achieved by supporting immunisation programmes in the world’s poorest countries through to 2020.
Here is an example of how GAVI Alliance partners in Cambodia including the Health Minister, health workers and representatives from UNICEF and the World Health Organization are boosting routine immunisation coverage and campaigns against diseases like measles and rubella.