Vaccines to avert more than 23 million deaths by 2020

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A new GAVI study published in Vaccine predicts positive long-term impact of vaccines on mortality

2012.11.08. Zanzibar 1 KMKM Clinic nr Stone Town Mother Sauda Sarum (1) copyF

A new analysis, forecasting the impact of vaccinations on mortality, estimates that vaccinations administered between 2011 and 2020 will help to avert more than 23 million future deaths. Furthermore, because the analysis did not include several vaccines already widely in use, the authors conclude that the actual impact may even be higher than this.

Decade of Vaccines

The results appear in a special Decade of Vaccine supplement of the journal Vaccine, supported by GAVI and featuring a foreword jointly written by GAVI’s CEO Dr Seth Berkley, Director General of the World Health Organization, Dr Margaret Chan, President of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Global Development, Christopher Elias, Executive Director of UNICEF, Anthony Lake, Director of the US National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, and Executive Secretary of African Leaders Malaria Alliance, Joy Phumaphi.

In this study the authors also found that more than half of the deaths averted over this time period, 52%, are expected to be in Africa, with 27% in Southeast Asia.

GAVI’s Strategic Demand Forecasts

These figures were calculated by calling upon data from GAVI’s Strategic Demand Forecasts which estimate that by 2020 nearly all GAVI-supported countries with endemic disease are projected to have introduced vaccines protecting against hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type B, pneumococcal, rotavirus, rubella, yellow fever, meningitis A and Japanese encephalitis, while three-quarters of these countries will have introduced human papillomavirus vaccines.

Based on this the impact on mortality was calculated by looking at the difference in the number of deaths expected over the lifetime of those vaccinated compared with the number of deaths expected amongst those unvaccinated. In total the study estimates that these vaccines will prevent 9.9 million future deaths, with a further 13.4 million prevented from routine and supplementary measles vaccinations, making a total of 23.3 million deaths averted.

Authors of study

The senior author on the study was GAVI’s Director of Monitoring and Evaluation, Peter Hansen, along with contributions from Nina Schwalbe, GAVI’s Managing Director of Policy and Performance, Deblina Datta, Senior Specialist of Monitoring and Evaluation at GAVI, Lauren Franzel-Sassanpour, Senior Specialist of Demand Forecasting at GAVI and colleagues at the World Health Organization, PATH, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, the US Centers for Disease Control, the UK Health Protection Agency, Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard Global Health Institute and a private consultant.

The Decade of Vaccine supplement was created to bring together research reflecting the Global Vaccine Action Plan, involving 210 authors, 27 different papers, more than 90 reviewers, three guest editors and the other academic collaborators. The supplement also included a paper co-authored by GAVI’s Santiago Cornejo, Country Programmes Senior Specialist for Country Co-Financing, which showed a projection of costs, financing and additional resource requirements for low- and lower middle-income country immunisation programmes from 2011 to 2020.

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