Center for Vaccine Ethics & Policy
David R. Curry, MS
Center for Vaccine Ethics and Policy
The ‘decade-of-vaccines’ underway requires an independent voice — analyzing, clarifying and challenging the aims, impact and ethics of the global immunization and vaccines enterprise.
The Center for Vaccine Ethics and Policy (CVEP) intends to be that independent voice, engaging the full life-cycle of issues around global immunization and vaccines:
– building and refining the ethical frameworks that help assure that policy proceeds from values and aligns with their implications,
– analyzing and communicating about vaccine evidence, ethics and policy in scholarly journals, the media and in other fora,
– innovating new analytical, visualization and decision approaches to address these issues, and
– convening the full vaccine community to consider evidence, ethics and practical solutions, addressing opportunity and performance.
We proceed from a belief that the ethical imperative for vaccine policy is to accelerate the development and delivery of needed vaccines — producing sustained immunity and therapeutic benefit for all people at risk – assuring ethical, affordable, and equitable access regardless of circumstance or geography.
Acting on this belief and our intent above, we are building a record of contribution to the field highlighted by recent and ongoing CVEP projects, symposia, and consulting engagements, and contributions to similar initiatives organized by foundations, governments, NGOs, academia and industry.
Governance for the Center is led by Arthur L. Caplan, PhD, Head, Division of Medical Ethics, NYU Medical School, and the Drs. William F. and Virginia Connolly Mitty Professor of Bioethics, NYU Department of Population; and Dr. Paul A. Offit, professor of pediatrics in the Division of Infectious Diseases at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), the Maurice R. Hilleman Professor of Vaccinology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and Director of CHOP’s Vaccine Education Center. The Center’s Executive Director is David R. Curry, MS.
An Advisory Board provides additional oversight for CVEP and currently includes Dr. Stanley A. Plotkin, MD, Emeritus Professor of the University of Pennsylvania; Walter A. Orenstein, MD, Professor of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine and Associate Director, Emory Vaccine Center; Russel E. Kaufman, M.D. President Emeritus, Wistar Institute, and Christian Loucq, MD, former Director General, International Vaccine Institute (IVI).
Recognizing the gap in bioethics research and policy analysis in the vaccine field, the Penn Center for Bioethics of the University of Pennsylvania launched its Ethics of Vaccines Project in early 2005. Seed funding was received from the Penn Provost’s Interdisciplinary Seminar Fund and Penn Center for Aids Research (CFAR).
A project working group of 40 was formed, drawn from across the Penn community including the School of Medicine, the Law School, Wharton, the Annenberg School, and a number of life science disciplines, as well leaders from outside Penn from the public health community, the media, collaborating faculty at Columbia and Johns Hopkins, as well as from The Wistar Institute and major vaccine makers. The working continues to meet for regular seminar meting exploring a broad range of ethical and policy issues affecting vaccines and their public health impacts.
In late 2006, the Penn Center for Bioethics partnered with The Wistar Institute, one of the pioneers in vaccines research and development, to strengthen the project team. Also in 2006, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), the #1 ranked children’s hospital in the nation, and its Vaccines Education Center became a partner, significantly strengthening the leadership team. Dr. Paul Offit, head of Infectious Diseases at CHOP and a founding member of the project, commented, “As a number of new vaccines are entering public health and clinical practice, it is more important than ever to have clear, accurate information about vaccines and their critical role in public health. The Ethics of Vaccines Project is making an important contribution to clear thinking about vaccine policy, safety and ethical issues, and by doing so, helping parents, patients, clinicians and the public health professionals make informed choices and use vaccines more effectively.”
Leveraging three years of program development in the Ethics of Vaccines Project, the Penn Center for Bioethics, Wistar and CHOP formed The Center for Vaccines Ethics and Policy (CVEP) as a joint program in 2008. In 2012, NYU’s newly-founded Division of Medical Ethics became a host institution for CVEP, replacing Penn’s Center for Bioethics. In 2015, Wistar left the hosting institution group. In 2016, CVEP became a program of GE2P2 Global, comprising a foundation and public benefit corporation focused on thematic areas of governance. ethics, evidence, policy and practice [ge2p2] across human rights action, humanitarian response, health, education, heritage stewardship, and sustainable development.
Statement of Independence
Center for Vaccine Ethics and Policy (CVEP)
The Center for Vaccine Ethics and Policy (CVEP) is a program of the GE2P2 Global Foundation and maintains primary affiliations with the Division of Medical Ethics at NYU School of Medicine, and the Vaccine Education Center of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
CVEP’S work in vaccine and global health ethics and policy depends on in-kind and financial support from a range of sources, including foundations, NGOs, academic institutions, international agencies, the vaccine industry, and individual donors.
We strive to balance and diversify the sources of support we accept in pursuing project work, publishing, convening symposiums and meetings, and conducting research. We are committed to transparency in acknowledging the sources of support for work we undertake.
Regardless of the source, form or scale of support we receive, we do not accept and will not operate under any conditions which interfere with our independence in electing, designing or conducting our work, or in publishing and disseminating our findings.