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World Health Assembly endorses new plan to increase global access to vaccines
Date:5/25/2012

Geneva, Switzerland May 25, 2012 Ministers of Health from 194 countries at the Sixty-fifth World Health Assembly today endorsed a landmark Global Vaccine Action Plan (GVAP), a roadmap to prevent millions of deaths by 2020 through more equitable access to existing vaccines for people in all communities.

The GVAP was coordinated by the Decade of Vaccines Collaboration, a group of leading international vaccine experts, and represents the collective vision of hundreds of global health stakeholders to extend the full benefits of immunization to all people, regardless of where they are born, who they are, or where they live.

Currently, four out of every five children receive at least a basic set of vaccinations during infancy that allow them to lead healthy, productive lives. However, this means 20 percent of children still do not benefit from basic immunization.

This comprehensive plan involves four mutually reinforcing goals: strengthening routine immunization to meet vaccination coverage targets; accelerating control of vaccine-preventable diseases with polio eradication as the first milestone; introducing new and improved vaccines; and spurring research and development for the next generation of vaccines and technologies. The plan is expected to reduce global childhood mortality, surpassing the targets of the United Nations Millennium Development Goal 4.

"The Global Vaccine Action Plan focuses on the health needs of people at all stages of life," said Dr. Flavia Bustreo, Assistant Director-General for Family, Women's and Children's Health of the World Health Organization. "The plan promotes greater coordination and synergies between immunization and other child, adolescent and reproductive health interventions leading to healthier communities everywhere."

"While immunization already prevents millions of deaths and uncounted illness, we cannot rest until life-saving, cost-effective vaccine technology reaches peop
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Contact: Richard Hatzfeld
Richard.Hatzfeld@sabin.org
202-294-4637
Sabin Vaccine Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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