One child dies every 20 seconds from a disease that could be prevented from with a vaccine. Why? Because one in five children lack access to the life-saving immunizations that keep children healthy.
1.5 million children die every year
Children are disabled or killed every year by vaccine-preventable diseases like pneumonia, diarrhea, measles and polio. Pneumonia and diarrhea are the two biggest killers of children under five, and account for more than one-third of childhood deaths worldwide. Polio has recently reemerged in areas that had been polio-free for years and measles still kills an estimated 450 people each day—the majority of whom are young children.
Global health disparities
Every child deserves a shot at a healthy life, no matter where they live. Yet, seventy-five percent of unvaccinated children live in just 10 countries. Vaccines are an especially important health intervention because they level the playing field for the most vulnerable children who are otherwise unlikely to make it to a doctor or a hospital. For these children, access to vaccines can mean the difference between life and death, a healthy life or a lifetime of struggle.
Immunization is one of the world’s biggest public health success stories. Yet, 1 in 5 children still lack access to the life-saving immunizations that help keep children in the U.S. healthy. Coordinated worldwide vaccination efforts have made significant progress, particularly in reducing cases of measles and polio, but funding gaps could threaten these gains. By scaling-up the delivery of vaccines we can save children’s lives and also save billions of dollars through reduced treatment costs and gains in productivity.
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October 10, 2012 BY Hilary Saverin
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September 17, 2012 BY Gitanjli (Tanya) Arora MD, DTMH
I wrote this in a dusty hot room with no fan and a generator run laptop in the middle of South Sudan after a difficult day. This was in January 2010 – prior to South Sudan independence. I was emailing friends and family in Los Angeles - many of whom do not realize the privilege it is to have access to vaccines, so I wrote this email largely to convey the importance of immunizations... READ MORE »
POSTED IN: Global Health