May 25, 2012
The Sabin Vaccine Institute applauds the decision made today by the Sixty-fifth World Health Assembly to endorse the Global Vaccine Action Plan (GVAP). As a research and advocacy organization devoted to ensuring that life-saving vaccines reach the people that need them most, we commend this action plan, which lays the groundwork for the discovery, development and equitable delivery of vaccines.
The GVAP is the product of an 18-month consultation process involving input from more than 1,100 individuals in 140 countries (representing 290 distinct organizations). This remarkable effort was coordinated by the Decade of Vaccines (DoV)Collaboration, a group of leading international vaccine experts representing the collective vision to extend the full benefits of immunization to all people everywhere.
Sabin Executive Vice President Dr. Ciro de Quadros played an important role in the plan’s development by serving as the Co-chair of the DoV Collaboration Steering Committee, the driving force behind the drafting of the GVAP.
“We know that immunization prevents millions of deaths and untold illness each year. We know that vaccines are among the most cost effective solutions in global health. Now is the time to make a concerted push so that life-saving vaccine technologies reach people in every community and in every country. This global plan will help us achieve that goal by placing emphasis on country ownership of immunization programs while also involving broad stakeholder participation,” said Dr. de Quadros. “This decade of vaccines is just the beginning of what will be known as the century of vaccines.”
Moving forward, the same collaborative effort used in developing the GVAP will be needed to effectively implement it. Stakeholders at all levels must take ownership over specific parts of the plan and be held accountable for those roles in order to meet disease elimination and immunization coverage targets. Individuals need to demand vaccines as both their right and responsibility. Where the right vaccines and technologies are not yet available, innovation is crucial to find solutions that work for the people who need them.
We welcome the approval of this new plan by the Sixty-fifth World Health Assembly and we offer our congratulations to all those involved in this successful effort to achieve a world free of needless suffering from vaccine-preventable diseases.
Read the press release from the Decade of Vaccines Collaboration here.