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Scaling Up Communication And Coordination Biggest Challenge In GAVI's $1B Vaccine Initiative

In this post in the Huffington Post’s “Impact” blog, Orin Levine, executive director of the International Vaccine Access Center at Johns Hopkins University, responds to the GAVI Alliance’s announcement on Tuesday that it will supply more than $1 billion in childhood vaccines to 37 of the world’s poorest countries, writing, “As the Alliance takes perhaps the most significant step ever toward increasing access to lifesaving immunization with this new and exciting round of country approvals, the challenge will be to ensure that every piece of the puzzle is in place to deliver on GAVI’s tremendous promise.”

“Beginning with this week’s announcement, GAVI and its partners plan to immunize more than a quarter of a billion more children by 2015 — a huge undertaking and simply unparalleled in GAVI’s brief history,” he writes, adding, “Dramatically scaling up access to vaccines requires that everyone involved — from epidemiologists in the lab to manufacturers on the production line to health care workers delivering the shots — elevate their games and most importantly, improve their communication and coordination. In many ways, this period of scaling up — when supply and demand are changing rapidly and require careful management — is the most difficult part of the ambitious GAVI agenda” (9/27).