Immunisation in the news

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October 2011

26 October 2011

Market Deal Brings Life-Saving Vaccine to Poor Countries

Source: PBS Newshour

For the organizations that have pulled this off, the beauty of it is engineering widespread health benefit while still making the numbers add up for manufacturers. Dr. Seth Berkley, CEO of the GAVI Alliance, explained it this way, "In the past, a new vaccine would appear in the West. It would be quite expensive. There would be no purchasing of that vaccine in the developing world. Even if there was, because of the fact that there wasn't an intermediary, the price wouldn't necessarily be at a level that they could get to.

"So GAVI comes and says, 'What we'd like to do now is supply a large number of countries and we'll provide a market. We'll be able to tell you how many doses we need.' That is important for vaccine production because it takes a number of years to build up the production capabilities for it. By giving this Advance Market Commitment, the donors made it quite attractive to the companies to enter this space. All of that together really encouraged those companies, and the longer term goal is to try to create a market that's healthy."

26 October 2011

Rwanda: WHO Warns About Neglected Diseases

Source: AllAfrica

Countries have been called upon to intensify efforts to reduce the major causes of child deaths pointing out that pneumonia and diarrhoea remain some of the most neglected diseases. The call was made at the beginning of a four-day regional meeting, in Kigali, on child survival that attracted delegates from eight African Francophone countries, organised by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The Minister of Health, Dr Agnes Binagwaho, noted that Rwanda introduced the pneumococcal vaccine for pneumonia with the help of Gavi Alliance, formerly the "Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation.

24 October 2011

Call for renewed global commitment on World Polio Day

Source: Radio Australia

Monday marks World Polio Day, a day set aside to remember the disease that threatens children with paralysis, sometimes even death. Twenty years ago, polio killed or paralysed 350,000 children each year worldwide. Since then, lifesaving vaccines have dramatically reduced the spread of polio with 99 percent of the world free from the disease.  

20 October 2011

US and Norway affirm commitment to global health

Source: EIN Presswire

President Obama hosted Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg for a meeting in the Oval Office on October 20. The leaders renewed their commitments in several areas, including global health, mentioning GAVI directly: 'Our mutual commitment to global health is reflected in support of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI). Together we pledged over 25% of the total $4.3 billion at a June 2011 pledging conference to vaccinate 250 million children by 2015.  This raises Norway’s total direct GAVI contributions to $1.2 billion.'

18 October 2011

Many malaria nations on course to end disease - WHO

Source: Reuters

Nearly a third of all malaria affected countries are on course to eliminate the mosquito-borne disease over the next 10 years, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Monday. In a progress report published by the Roll Back Malaria (RBM) partnership at the start of an international Malaria Forum conference in Seattle, the United Nations health body said "remarkable progress" had been made.

18 October 2011

New malaria vaccine shows power of public-private partnerships

Source: News Medical Net

New results published in the New England Journal of Medicine about a large-scale Phase III trial conducted in seven African countries of the malaria vaccine candidate RTS,S deserve a hearty round of applause. These promising results demonstrate the power of product development public-private partnerships to tackle global challenges. GAVI commends the efforts of its partners, the Malaria Vaccine Initiative at PATH and GlaxoSmithKline and the dedication of the entire malaria community including the 11 African research centers currently conducting the trial.

14 October 2011

Vaccination: Easy way out of cervical cancer

Source: The Tribune Nigeria

Widespread vaccination has the potential to reduce cervical cancer deaths around the world by as much as two-thirds. Experts urged that alongside vaccination, women should take other measures such as pap smear screening and condom usage to protect them against cervical cancer, reports Sade Oguntola.

05 October 2011

Carter Centre calls for wider immunisation programme

Source: Financial Times

The long-running and expensive campaign to eradicate polio -- which costs about $1bn a year -- is likely to fail unless it is combined with vaccines that combat other deadly diseases such as measles, a leading public health specialist has warned.

03 October 2011

Immune system: In-house sentinels against disease

Source: AFP

The 2011 Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded to three scientists who have done more than anyone to lay bare the two-tier structure of the immune system. Their achievements are central to vaccine development, which depends on priming the immune system to target pathogens, and to new treatments against cancer, a process in which tumorous cells proliferate unchecked.

02 October 2011

Making money in pursuit of social good

Source: Financial Times

The International Finance Fund for Immunisation used tiered finance to raise $3bn in AAA-rated bond offerings. It is estimated this money has prevented 3.4m premature deaths, through raising vaccine coverage in 70 of the world's poorest countries. At the same time, it has provided investors with improved returns over sovereign bonds.

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