FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2016

Norway contributes to GAVI Alliance's polio vaccination program

Norway contributed $190 million to the GAVI Alliance's polio work on Thursday, supporting GAVI's efforts to complement the global effort to end polio led by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI).

"Norway's leadership in global health is legendary, this additional support for inactivated polio immunization and strengthening routine immunization inspires the world to work together for a world without polio," Seth Berkley, the CEO of the GAVI Alliance, said.

The funding will help GAVI-supported countries through strengthened immunization and the introduction of the inactivated polio vaccine (IPV).

"I am delighted that we have signed an agreement with GAVI to support global efforts to eradicate polio," Børge Brende, the Norwegian Minister for Foreign Affairs, said. "We have a unique opportunity to eradicate this infectious and debilitating disease, but it will require an extra effort if we are to succeed."

GAVI is expected to begin introducing IPV to countries later this year. The alliance has received applications for IPV support from 26 countries.

"The international community is at a pivotal period in its efforts to eradicate polio," Berkley said. "Norway's support to the GAVI Alliance is critical in our efforts to strengthen routine immunization and contribute to the polio endgame strategy, both of which will protect future generations of children."