Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, welcomes G7 health ministers’ call for strengthening primary health care in all countries, including the poorest, as well as the adoption of the G7 Primary Health Care Universal Knowledge Initiative.
“France’s leadership in fighting inequality and its support for health care across the Sahel and more broadly the developing world, including its funding to Gavi, is making a huge difference in many of the world’s poorest countries, saving lives, preventing pandemics and promoting economic growth,” said Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. “We welcome this call to action and this initiative. Immunisation is a crucial platform for primary health care which should be a right for everyone, no matter where they live, and which is core to the Sustainable Development Goals.”
“Gavi commends the French G7 presidency for putting primary health care on the agenda,” said Dr Berkley. “If G7 leaders want to make a real difference, immunisation has the potential to save millions of lives and trigger massive economic growth as US$ 1 invested can bring as much as US$ 48 in economic benefits.”
At least half of the world’s 7.3 billion people still lack access to essential health services. Immunisation offers opportunities to give communities access to a range of health services many times throughout their lives. Today, routine immunisation reaches 85% of the world’s children – more than any other health intervention – and is the only intervention that brings families into contact with the health system five or more times during the first year of a child’s life.
Since 2000 Gavi has helped immunise more than 700 million people in the world’s poorest countries, preventing more than 10 million deaths. Gavi also works with developing countries, as well as partners including the Global Fund, to build strong health systems. Its support to countries helps ensure that populations are protected from disease before pandemics have the chance to spread and supports an effective response to disease outbreaks after they occur through vaccine stockpiles.