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Measles Deaths in Africa Plunge by 91%
Date:11/29/2007

vaccinate their children," said Bonnie McElveen-Hunter, Chairman of the Board of the American Red Cross. "These mobilization efforts are essential for our success, helping us consistently reach more than 95 percent of the vulnerable population and saving countless lives."

A key factor contributing to progress in reducing measles deaths has been the strong support of the Measles Initiative. Since its launch in 2001, the Initiative has supported vaccination efforts in over 50 countries and mobilized more than US $470 million with help from partners such as the GAVI Alliance.

"The successful reduction of measles deaths would not be possible without the collaborative work among many partners -- including governments, the United Nations, NGOs, corporations and volunteers from local communities -- each of which bring unique strengths and resources that are essential for success," said Kathy Calvin, executive vice president and chief operating officer, United Nations Foundation. "We commend our partners for coming together to protect children around the world from measles."

Background:

The Measles Initiative is a partnership committed to reducing measles deaths globally. Launched in 2001, the Initiative --- led by the American Red Cross, the United Nations Foundation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, UNICEF and WHO -- provides technical and financial support to governments and communities on vaccination campaigns. To learn more, visit http://www.measlesinitiative.org.

Other key partners in the fight against measles include the GAVI Alliance, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the Canadian International Development Agency, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Becton, Dickinson and Company, the Izumi Foundation, the Vodafone Group Foundation, The Church of Jesus C
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SOURCE American Red Cross
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