WHO announces global immunization strategy to save 50 million lives by 2030


The World Health Organisation and partners called on April 26, 2021, for an action to boost the vaccination against measles and various other diseases worldwide after the routine jabs have been severely disrupted by the pandemic.

The WHO along with vaccine alliance GAVI and UN Children’s Agency announced that their new global strategy has the potential of saving 50 million lives within less than a decade.

The WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated that to avoid multiple outbreaks of life-threatening diseases such as yellow fever, measles, and diphtheria, it must be ensured that routine vaccination services are protected in every country.

New vaccination strategy of WHO:

The new vaccination strategy to boost the immunization services worldwide aims at achieving 90 percent coverage for the essential vaccines that are given in childhood and adolescence by 2030.

By 2030, the vaccination program also aims at slashing half of the number of children globally who receive no vaccines at all.

It also aims at introducing or scaling up the use of new or under-utilized vaccines for the diseases such as rotavirus, COVID-19, and human papillomavirus (HPV).

As per WHO, the push has the potential of saving 50 million lives, of which, 75% of them are in poor countries.

To ensure routine immunization, development agencies including government and civil society need to work together to ensure that no child is left behind.

Pandemic disrupts essential health services worldwide:

The push from WHO and the partners has come as the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic disrupted the essential health services all over the world.

Around 60 mass vaccination campaigns were postponed in 50 countries which has put around 228 million people, mostly children, at the risk for the diseases such as polio and measles.

Gavi Chief Seth Berkley has warned that millions of children across the world are most likely to miss out on basic vaccines as the ongoing pandemic has threatened to unravel two decades of progress in routine immunization.

While the situation has seen improvement somewhat from 2020, a survey by WHO has shown that more than one-third of the nations were still seeing disruptions to their routine immunization programs.

Reduction in the supply of vaccines and other equipment:

For child vaccinations, the supply of vaccines and other equipment is also extremely essential.

According to UNICEF, the disruptions because of the pandemic and dramatically reduced the doses of vaccines it delivered in 2020 to 2.01 billion, down from 2.29 billion in 2019.

UNICEF head stressed that even before the pandemic there were signs that we’re losing ground in the fight against preventable child illness. Before the pandemic crisis, some 20 million children worldwide were already missing out on critical vaccines and the pandemic has made it worse.

Gaps in the vaccination have already led to serious measles outbreaks in various nations, such as Pakistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Yemen and other outbreaks can be expected as the growing number of children miss their shot.

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