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Gavi Mission To Visit Cameroon to Assess Immunization Progress and Reiterate Support

Gavi Mission To Visit Cameroon to Assess Immunization Progress and Reiterate Support

Paru le mercredi, 29 novembre 2023 16:38

A high-level delegation from Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, led by its Chairman of the Board, José Manuel Barroso, will visit Cameroon from November 30 to December 1 to assess the country's progress in implementing activities to strengthen routine immunization and to reaffirm the organization's commitment to supporting the Cameroonian government in achieving its immunization and health goals.

The mission will focus specifically on the introduction of the first malaria vaccine in Cameroon, as well as the vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV) infections, which cause cervical cancer, one of the leading causes of death among women in Cameroon. The mission agenda includes meetings with government officials, private sector representatives, and the donor community.

Cameroon has submitted a request to Gavi for assistance in deploying the RTS,S vaccine, recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) for use in malaria-endemic regions. The recommendation is based on the results of a pilot program conducted in Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi, which has vaccinated over 1.7 million children since 2019.

The vaccine will be administered starting in 2024, using a four-dose schedule beginning at 6 months of age, to children aged 6 to 24 months in 42 health districts targeted based on malaria burden, according to the Ministry of Public Health (Minsanté).

On November 21, Cameroon received its first shipment of 331,000 doses of the RTS,S vaccine delivered by Gavi, marking the start of deliveries to countries that did not participate in the pilot malaria vaccination program. Gavi also supported the introduction of the HPV vaccine into the Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI). As of this year, this vaccine has been reduced from two doses to one and extended to boys, whereas only girls have been targeted since its introduction into the routine EPI in October 2020.

As a public-private partnership, Gavi helps vaccinate more than half the world's children against some of the world's deadliest diseases. Since its inception in 2000, Gavi has helped vaccinate over a billion children and ultimately prevented more than 17.3 million deaths, halving child mortality in 78 low-income countries. Gavi also plays a crucial role in enhancing global health security by supporting health systems and outbreak response and financing global vaccine stockpiles against Ebola, cholera, meningitis, and yellow fever.

Patricia Ngo Ngouem

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