Mid-Term Review meeting highlights immunisation successes and challenges

MTR group photo final PR

GAVI CEO Seth Berkley, Ghanaian President H.E. John Dramani Mahama, Hillevi Engström, Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation, and GAVI Board Chair Dagfinn Høybråten meet before the Mid-Term Review in Stockholm on 30 October 2013.
Credit: GAVI 2013.

Stockholm, 30 October 2013 – More children in the developing world are benefitting from vaccines provided through the GAVI Alliance than at any point in the global public-private partnership’s history, an accountability meeting in Stockholm heard today.

Alliance partners have already supported the immunisation of a total of 97 million children in 2011 and 2012, saving 1.1 million lives. This achievement, combined with a record number of vaccine introductions in 2013, means the Alliance is on course to reach its target of immunising an additional quarter of a billion children between 2011 and 2015, saving four million lives.

When looking at the entire period since the Alliance was formed in 2000, GAVI partners are expected to have helped vaccinate 440 million children through routine systems, averting approximately six million deaths by the end of 2013.

Global partnership

GAVI partners met in Stockholm today to review their progress since June 2011 when donors committed US$ 7.4 billion to support vaccination programmes from 2011 to 2015.

Hillevi Engström, Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation, and Ghanaian President HE John Dramani Mahama hosted the meeting in the Swedish capital that gathered donor and implementing country representatives and Alliance partners including the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, civil society organisations and vaccine manufacturers.

“Well-spent development aid can save and change lives,” said Hillevi Engström. “The GAVI Alliance is achieving impressive results and clearly demonstrating the cost-effectiveness of immunisation as a tool for improving global health. It is important that the partners who have met in Stockholm today continue to work together to find ways of reaching the 22 million children who go unimmunised each year.” 

“Every child, no matter where he or she is born, has the right to a healthy life and vaccines are one of the best ways to ensure this,” said President Mahama. “GAVI deserves the support of all leaders desirous of building healthier communities.”

“The GAVI Alliance is having a positive impact on the lives of hundreds of millions of people, clearly demonstrating the overwhelming benefit of investing in immunisation,” said GAVI Board Chair, Dagfinn Høybråten. “Our partners are living up to the ambitious commitments they made in 2011 to children living in the 73 poorest countries in the world.”

Successes and challenges

At today’s meeting, GAVI CEO Dr Seth Berkley presented a detailed update on progress since the successful London pledging conference in June 2011. This success has been made possible through GAVI’s unique funding model which brings together donor funding, financial contributions from developing countries, and supply and price commitments from vaccine industry partners.

The pledges announced today are as follows:

  • Sweden, who in 2011 pledged US$ 40m per year to GAVI to 2015, will now provide a total of US$ 129m for 2013 and 2014.
  • The Republic of Korea announced a new commitment to GAVI of a total of US$ 5m from 2013-2017.

Delegates also engaged in detailed discussions around the challenges of maintaining vaccination programmes while also reaching the 22 million children who go unvaccinated each year.

The event closed with a Ministerial Conversation on Sustainable Funding which highlighted the opportunities and challenges of securing long-term, predictable funding to secure vaccination programmes.   

During the final event, Sweden and the Republic of Korea made new financial pledges to GAVI to support the immunisation of children in developing countries. These contributions unlock already-announced additional funds through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Challenge Fund.

The European Commission also announced that it will host a high-level preparatory meeting for GAVI partners in early 2014 ahead of the Alliance’s next funding cycle.

The GAVI Mid-Term Review report, released on 14 October, detailed the progress made against its strategic goals set in 2011:

Accelerating the uptake and use of under-used and new vaccines (Strategic Goal 1)
Since 2011, GAVI has funded a total of 67 new vaccine introductions and campaigns. By 2014 all 73 GAVI-supported countries will have introduced 5-in-1 pentavalent vaccines, including introductions in Haiti, Myanmar, Somalia and South Sudan.

Strengthening health systems to improve immunisation coverage (Strategic Goal 2)
Following a slow start, GAVI’s recently revamped health system strengthening programme now ensures that investments are translated more clearly into improved immunisation outcomes. As a result, GAVI is seeing investments and improvements in health system rapidly picking up speed.

Improving long-term predictability and stability of immunisation financing (Strategic Goal 3)
GAVI is close to achieving its target of timely receipt of 100% of co-financing payments (contributions made by developing countries towards the cost of the vaccines). As of August, 64 of the 67 co-financing countries had fulfilled their commitments for 2012. And from 2011 to the end of 2013 these payments will total US$ 125 million, representing 8% of GAVI’s total support to these countries. All this is also helping to drive increases in country investment in their own health systems.

Helping to improve vaccine market conditions for developing countries (Strategic Goal 4)
GAVI has also helped to produce more predictability and competition in the vaccine market, which has helped to bring down the cost of fully vaccinating a child with three priority vaccines – pentavalent, pneumococcal and rotavirus - from US$ 35 in 2010 to US$ 23 in 2012.

Download the report (PDF) 

GAVI is funded by governments [Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Republic of Korea, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, United States], the European Commission, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, as well as private and corporate partners [Absolute Return for Kids, Anglo American plc., The Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, Comic Relief, Dutch Postcode Lottery, His Highness Sheikh Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, JP Morgan, “la Caixa” Foundation, LDS Charities, Lions Clubs, OPEC and Vodafone].

Click to view the full donor list.

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