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Bill Gates Reflects On Visit To Ghana To Learn About Immunization Program

“I arrive in Ghana today to see firsthand why the country’s immunization system is working so well and meet the people involved,” Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, writes in the foundation’s “Impatient Optimists” blog. “Ghana’s approach works so well for a few key reasons: Rigorous…

Effectiveness Of Candidate Malaria Vaccine Decreases Over Time, Study Shows

“The effectiveness of an experimental malaria vaccine developed by GlaxoSmithKline wanes over time, with the shot protecting only 16.8 percent of children over four years, according to trial data,” Reuters reports. “The disappointing results for RTS,S — the world’s first potential malaria vaccine — raise further questions about whether it…

Mozambique Completes First HIV Vaccine Clinical Trial

Last week, “researchers at Mozambique’s Polana Cancio Centre for Research and Public Health completed a trial evaluating the safety of an HIV vaccine candidate,” the country’s “first HIV vaccine trial,” and it “is set to embark on a second, a demonstration of the country’s increased HIV research capacity,” PlusNews reports. The Phase…

IRIN Examines Maternal Mortality In Nepal

IRIN examines maternal mortality in Nepal, writing, “Observed declines [in the maternal mortality ratio (MMR)] since the early 1990s make Nepal, together with Bangladesh, the most recent ‘success story,’ comparable to countries like Malaysia, Thailand and Cuba that gained ground decades earlier, Julia Hussein, lead author of a 2011 medical…

Nigerian Polio Vaccinators Face Challenges But Aim For Eradication By 2018

The Independent reports on the challenges polio vaccinators in Nigeria face, including “the daily gauntlet of militant gangs, kidnappers, and unforgiving waters, on a mission to immunize children.” Polio remains endemic in Nigeria, as well as Pakistan and Afghanistan, “[a]nd it’s why the vaccinators — determined to cut the deaths…

Global Efforts To Address Malnutrition Should Factor In Immunization

“On Red Nose Day, we are reminded of the famine in Ethiopia that triggered the first Comic Relief, over 25 years ago,” and “as we reflect, we now know that the link between malnutrition and infectious disease makes for a particularly vicious circle,” Seth Berkley, CEO of the GAVI Alliance,…

Examining GPEI Strategic Plan To End Polio

Writing in the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists” blog, Apoorva Mallya, a program officer for the foundation’s vaccine delivery team, highlights a recent Lancet editorial examining the Global Polio Eradication Initiative’s (GPEI) six-year Strategic Plan to end polio. “As the editorial notes, there have been plans with target dates and…

Taliban Alleged To Have Stopped Annual Polio Vaccination Program In Rural Afghanistan

“The Taliban have halted an annual polio vaccination campaign in a remote part of Afghanistan, according to a senior official, raising concerns that opposition to the critical immunization drive could be spilling across from insurgent groups in neighboring Pakistan,” the Guardian reports. Tamim Nuristani, governor of the remote Nuristan province, said…

Sierra Leone Charges 29 Government Health Officials With Defrauding GAVI Alliance

“The head of Sierra Leone’s Anti-Corruption Commission says that 29 government health officials will appear in court on corruption charges for having allegedly defrauded” the GAVI Alliance, the Associated Press reports. “Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara told the Associated Press that the government’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Kisito Sheku Daoh, six other medical doctors…