EU to Donate More Money on Vaccines

Written by | Wednesday, May 21st, 2014

The European Union has promised to increase its annual development assistance devoted to vaccines and immunization programs from the current 10 million euro to 25 million euro in the budgetary period 2014-2020. Brussels announced this change in the EU’s development budget on the day when the Gavi Alliance kicked off its funding replenishment appeal. The Gavi Alliance is a development advocacy that pushes for healthy lives for children and adults across the developing world through increasing access to immunization and vaccines. As Jose Manuel Barroso put it, it is horrible and unacceptable that approximately 1.5 million children still die each year from diseases that could be easily prevented by a single vaccine. He added that the EU was committed to do everything possible in the long run to ensure that more adults and children have access to lifesaving vaccines no matter where they live.
The EU’s increase in the budget on vaccines will be dedicated to the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (Gavi), which has been campaigning since 2000 to protect children from easily preventable diseases by vaccination. The Gavi’s chair, Dagfinn Hoybraten, embraced the EU’s donation saying that the new funding will make it possible for the organization to get even closer to achieving its goal of increasing its outreach by 2020. To date, being the biggest player in the world’s pro-vaccination campaigns, the Gavi has received funding from organizations as diverse as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the OPEC Fund for International Development, JP Morgan, Anglo-American plc, and Statoil.
In 2016-2020, the alliance is planning to immunize a further 300 million children and save about 5-6 million lives, which will cost about 7.5 million USD. When successful, the number of children fully protected by the vaccines recommended by the World Health Organization will increase by a factor of ten. Gavi has therefore already started massive fund-raising, taking its appeal to many different organizations with the aim to finish at the beginning of next year, which will be Europe’s official “Year of Development”. So far, the EU’s funding covered only about 0.7 percent of Gavi’s budgets.

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