This week saw an emphasis on global collaboration to fight some of the world’s biggest diseases.
On Friday, a coalition to fight pneumonia was announced ahead of World Pneumonia Day next week. Kevin Watkins, CEO of Save the Children, warned that pneumonia is “the biggest single killer of children” and the UK’s International Development Secretary, Priti Patel highlighted the importance of vaccination in controlling this deadly disease. At the same time, the annual Pneumonia and Diarrhea Progress Report was launched to provide the data to back up these calls to action.
Meanwhile it was revealed in the World Health Organisation’s 2017 Global Tuberculosis Report that TB remains the world’s number 1 infectious killer. The report emphasised the urgent need for political commitment to end TB.
At the Asian Conference on Diarrhoeal Diseases, the incoming President praised the rapid response with Gavi-funded vaccines for preventing a major cholera outbreak in Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh. As the cholera outbreak in Yemen weakens, MSF closed most clinics and NEJM reflected on the outbreak.
A study published in Vaccine this week looked at the potential impact of rotavirus vaccination in Afghanistan, which has recently applied for Gavi support. In neighbouring Pakistan, the Punjab Information Technology Board shows their progress harnessing mobile technology to increase vaccine coverage.