Immunization Program Management

Researchers develop promising DNA vaccine for MERS

Scientists at the University of Pennsylvania have developed a DNA vaccine that can protect against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). This is the first synthetic vaccine that has been shown to induce protective immunity against the virus in animals, the researchers say.

The race to zero: Nigeria's fight to wipe out polio

Kano State, Nigeria (CNN)Ahmadu Kanduwa's home is just two kilometers away from the local clinic in Nigeria's northern Sumaila district -- two kilometers from the vaccine that could have prevented his son, Isa, from contradicting polio more than a year ago. It's something Kanduwa thinks about often.
"I have this thought, if he had received say five or six doses, he would have been immune from this ailment," Kanduwa said.

WHO: Pakistan, Afghanistan must step up fight against polio

GENEVA –  Pakistan and Afghanistan must intensify efforts to halt spread of the crippling poliovirus, including better screening of travelers heading abroad, the World Health Organization said on Monday.
The WHO emergency committee of experts warned in a statement that vaccinations of international air travelers in Afghanistan are not being tracked "and no exit screening and restriction of unvaccinated travelers has been implemented at international airports".

Meningitis C vaccine shortage prompts fears of major outbreak in Africa

A shortage of meningitis C vaccine is threatening to jeopardise the ability to cope with a potential outbreak of the disease in Africa, international public health organisations, including the World Health Organisation, have warned.
A Meningitis A vaccine introduced in 2010, MenAfriVac, has dramatically reduced incidence of that strain but type C infections have been increasing and a cheap equivalent that would protect against meningitis C, among other strains, is still years away.

Vaccines & Viruses: Measles outbreak kills over 300 in Congo

Measles mortality. An outbreak of measles is wreaking havoc in the Democratic Republic of Congo. At least 315 people have died in Katanga, a copper and cobalt mining province about the size of Spain, and more than 20,000 people have caught the disease. According to Reuters, United Nations officials said last week many deaths likely have gone unreported, and the outbreak is “only worsening and gaining ground.”

Vaccine hesitancy: A growing challenge for immunization programmes

18 AUGUST 2015 | GENEVA - People who delay or refuse vaccines for themselves or their children are presenting a growing challenge for countries seeking to close the immunization gap. Globally, 1 in 5 children still do not receive routine life-saving immunizations, and an estimated 1.5 million children still die each year of diseases that could be prevented by vaccines that already exist, according to WHO.


Call for more weaponry against ‘neglected malaria’

[NEW DELHI] The World Health Organization has called for more research on ways to battle malaria caused by the Plasmodium vivax parasite, in the wake of a surge of infections in Western India.
According to the WHO, the parasite is spreading fast in the Indian cities of Ahmedabad, Bikaner and Mumbai. It still kills fewer people than its relation P. falciparum, but is harder to prevent and treat.
“P. vivax is harder to eliminate than P. falciparum due to its relapsing nature.”

State Vaccination Policies Strong Predictor of Disease Outbreaks

University of Georgia (UGA) researchers claim lenient state vaccination laws led to epidemics of otherwise preventable diseases.  

David Bradford, the Busbee Chair in Public Policy at UGA School of Public and International Affairs and Anne Mandich, PhD candidate in the Department of Applied and Agricultural Economics at UGA, claimed that despite officials declaring immunizations are important to public health there is a large portion of Americans that still forego the measure.  


Pénurie de vaccins contre la méningite C en Afrique

Menacée par une épidémie de méningite de grande ampleur, l’Afrique fait également face à une pénurie de vaccins pour la prévenir. Au cours des six premiers mois de l’année, la méningite C qui sévit au Niger et au Nigeria a déjà frappé 12 000 personnes dont 800 sont décédées. La Croix-Rouge, l’Unicef, l’Organisation mondiale de la santé (OMS) et Médecins sans frontières (MSF) craignent une explosion du nombre de cas l’an prochain.

La polio, ce lourd fardeau dont a hérité l’Afrique

L'Afrique est-elle en passe d'être débarrassée de la polio ? En 1995, cette maladie toucha tous les pays du continent africain, paralysant à vie plus de 75 000 enfants.
L’année suivante, Nelson Mandela lançait une nouvelle campagne : « Kick Polio Out of Africa » (Bouter la polio hors d’Afrique). Son souhait : que la polio connaisse le même sort que la seule autre maladie humaine à avoir été consignée aux manuels d’histoire, la variole. Nous sommes aujourd’hui un peu plus près de ce but.