USAID praises lowering of vaccine prices for poorest countries

The head of the U.S. Agency for International Development recently praised the vaccine industry for reducing the prices for its vaccines in the world’s poorest countries.

Dr. Rajiv Shah, an administrator for USAID, said vaccine manufacturers are helping make the goal of saving the lives of four million children in the next five years through the expansion of vaccinations a reality, according to

"We welcome the news issued yesterday by the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization that several vaccine industry partners are reducing the prices for lifesaving vaccines to protect women and children against fatal diseases for the poorest countries,” Shah said, reports.

Shah also used the opportunity to call for an increase in the delivery of pentavalent vaccines that combine immunizations against diphtheria, pertussis, hepatitis B and Hib to those children born without access to them.

By expanding the reach of the rotavirus vaccine, Shah said that the lives of 300,000 of the 1.3 million children who die each year from diarrheal diseases can be saved. According to Shah, the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine has the potential to save the lives of an additional 500,000 people.

“Our commitment to fund vaccine research through GAVI and expand the reach of current vaccines, combined with the efforts manufacturers have made to lower costs, represent a key global partnership that is crucial to saving lives and improving the health of children, women, and families,” Shah said.

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