GAVI Watch [to 1 February 2014]

GAVI Watch [to 1 February 2014]
:: Bangladesh launches country’s largest measles-rubella campaign to date targeting 52 million children. GAVI said Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina launched the campaign during a ceremony in Dhaka. GAVI is supporting the three-week campaign. Dr Seth Berkley, GAVI Alliance CEO, said, “This is the largest ever measles-rubella campaign launched to date with support from the GAVI Alliance. Investing in rubella will provide a much-needed boost to improving women’s and children’s health, and will help accelerate global progress in controlling two life-threatening diseases. GAVI plans to support 49 countries to introduce the combined measles-rubella vaccine immunizing close to 700 million boys and girls by 2020.”

This campaign is expected to reach more than 170,000 schools and 150,000 immunisation centers with a special attention to be given to children without homes and others who are difficult-to-reach….

:: India commits US$4 million to GAVI Alliance vaccine programmes
GAVI said the contribution, which will be spread over four years as part of the Government of India’s 12th Five Year Plan, “marks a milestone in the relationship between India and the GAVI Alliance. India has received support for its immunisation programme from GAVI since 2002. The announcement comes at a critical time as the GAVI Alliance is stepping up its efforts to save children’s lives and protect people’s health by increasing access to immunisation in the world’s poorest countries.”$-4-million-to-gavi-alliance-vaccine-programmes/

:: New GAVI Advisory Council in India Formed
Prominent Indian experts to support the GAVI Alliance in reducing child mortality through immunisation
The new council “will provide strategic advice and thought leadership to GAVI for its commitment to India” and involve “nine prominent Indians…(who) have agreed to support the goal of increasing access to immunisation and reducing child mortality across the country.

They will work with the GAVI Alliance, a public private partnership made up of members including the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, as members of the GAVI Advisory Council in India. The inaugural members of the Council are:

–       Baijayant Jay Panda, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha

–       Nand Kishore Singh, Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha

–       Harshavardhan Neotia, Chairman, Ambuja Neotia Group

–       Dr. Vishwajeet Kumar, CEO, Community Empowerment Lab

–       Shabana Azmi, actor, social activist

–       Bachi Karkaria, journalist

–       Yuvraj Singh, cricketer, child health and cancer activist

–       Sangitha Reddy, Executive Director, Apollo Hospitals Group

–       Dr C P Bansal, President, South Asia Paediatric Association

Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of the GAVI Alliance, said “GAVI needs India’s partnership and support to work with India to reduce child mortality.  These eminent personalities from different fields, will reinforce our efforts in the policy discourses on child health and advise the GAVI secretariat and partners on the challenges of immunisation and the introduction of new vaccines in India. I am delighted to be launching this council, and I sincerely welcome and am grateful for the acceptance of its inaugural members.”