A recent study demonstrates an innovative measles and rubella vaccine, which has received approval from the Board of Gavi (the Vaccine Alliance), is effective enough to help save over a million people.
The vaccine could particularly help health care workers make further progress in maintaining control over measles and rubella throughout countries that are still developing.
“Countries cannot begin to hope to eliminate measles until they get epidemics under control,” Dagfinn Høybråten, chair of the Gavi Board, said. “The package of support we have agreed on today will save lives and give developing countries a golden opportunity to reform how they protect their children against measles.”
More than 100,000 people worldwide die each year because of measles, including many children under 5.
“Measles is a key indicator of the strength of a country’s immunization systems and, all too often, it ends up being the canary in the coalmine,” Gavi CEO Seth Berkley said. “Where we see measles outbreaks, we can be almost certain that coverage of other vaccines is also low. Today’s decision will help to not only sustainably reduce the number of deaths from measles, but it will also help countries improve their coverage with other vaccines.”