WHO: Global Vaccine Safety Initiative website launched

WHO: Global Vaccine Safety Initiative website launched

The GVSI promotes efforts to strengthen “vaccine pharmacovigilance” worldwide. This means identifying any “adverse events” that may occur following immunization and investigating them to see if they are related to the vaccine or the immunization procedure. The Blueprint refers to vaccine pharmacovigilance as “the science and activities relating to the detection, assessment, understanding, prevention and communication of adverse events following immunization, or of any other vaccine- or immunization-related issues”, as defined by CIOMS/WHO (2012). Adverse events are also sometimes referred to as “side-effects”. Vaccine pharmacovigilance is not just a scientific exercise. Its purpose is to ensure that vaccines are safe and to follow up if a case arises where a vaccination may be linked to harm.

This site provides a wide range of information about vaccine safety in general and the GVSI in particular. The site includes:

– information on established untoward effects of vaccines and estimates of their rates of occurrence;

– advice from an Expert Advisory Group on vaccine safety issues of global importance;

– links to tools and methods for enhancing local capacity in vaccine safety;

– up-to-date information on the management of the GVSI.

The GVSI is a global collaborative effort to ensure that everyone everywhere can be protected from serious infectious diseases with minimal untoward effects from the best available vaccines.

Training materials, tools for investigating vaccine safety concerns, and links to the web sites of other organizations are also provided.