Gavi Board meets to discuss routine immunisation, COVAX’s 2022 strategy

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Gavi Board meets to discuss routine immunisation, COVAX’s 2022 strategy
29 September 2021
:: The Gavi Board met yesterday to discuss the impact of the pandemic on routine immunisation and how COVAX can best support countries’ efforts to control the pandemic, as part of a broader consultative process to develop the 2022 COVAX strategy

:: Items covered during the meeting included the resilience of routine immunisation in Gavi-supported countries, the Vaccine Alliance’s effort to reach the estimated 12.4 million “zero-dose children” in Gavi-supported countries that do not have access to the most basic life-saving immunisation services, coverage ambitions for COVAX as well as support for delivery in COVAX AMC countries

:: José Manuel Barroso, Board Chair: “Gavi’s ambitions have never been greater than they are today: in 2022, the Vaccine Alliance will not only seek to extend its core work on routine immunisation, including reaching millions of zero-dose children, but also play a lead role in COVAX, the largest and most complex roll out of vaccines in history. This Board meeting provided an invaluable opportunity to take stock on both areas of activities as they increasingly converge on the same goal: ensuring that the most vulnerable are able to access life-saving vaccines and the benefits they bring.”

… Gavi and its Alliance partners UNICEF and WHO continue to help prepare countries for this rapid scale up. At its June meeting the Gavi Board approved new funding of US$ 799 million to support the delivery of COVAX-funded doses in lower income economies and humanitarian zones over the next two years. The funding comes in addition to a previously approved envelope of US$ 150 million in delivery support. A significant portion of this funding is being distributed rapidly and on an accelerated timeline to meet countries’ urgent vaccine rollout-related needs, for example rolling out ultra-cold chain infrastructure in time for the arrival of mRNA vaccines.
“As the global solution designed around equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, COVAX’s strategy will continue to adapt as the pandemic evolves.” said Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi. “For many countries, COVAX is one of the primary sources of supply of COVID-19 vaccines, and we must ensure we best serve their needs. As we embark on our most intense period for deliveries yet, COVAX will also continue to focus on strengthening in-country vaccine deployment and even closer coordination with partners such as the African Union. COVAX will also need to focus further on protecting routine immunisation programmes and explore opportunities for integration with Gavi’s core strategy, with its particular focus on marginalised and missed communities”…

Gavi progress report shows resilience in childhood vaccinations despite impact of COVID-19 pandemic
29 September 2021
:: In the face of a global pandemic, routine and childhood vaccination has held relatively strong, Gavi’s latest Annual Progress Report shows, with routine immunisations dropping 4 percentage points over the course of 2020
:: While lower than 2019, vaccination rates in 2020 were characterised by a significant drop in March to May followed by a strong rebound, which is a testament to the valiant work of governments and health care workers in lower-income countries
:: Latest statistics show there are now 13.7 million “zero-dose” children in the 68 Gavi-supported countries receiving no immunisations, many of whom live in marginalised communities in remote rural areas, urban slums or conflict settings
Download the full report here