Sunday, November 27, 2011

GAVI to purchase and distribute HPV vaccine in developing countries

As you may already know, 275,000 HPV-related cervical cancer deaths occur each year, with 88% of those deaths happening in developing countries. The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI, consisting of groups such as the WHO, UNICEF, and vaccine manufacturers) has announced plans to work with manufacturers such as GlaxoSmithKline and Merck to acquire full courses of the vaccine at special rates.

The success of this program, of course, depends on a couple of crucial factors:

First, can GAVI actually find a partner to provide enough doses to meet their goal of vaccinating 2 million women and girls?

Second, GAVI wants to distribute the vaccines in 9 currently-unspecified countries. Social or political instability can hinder GAVI's efforts in affected regions, just like with poliovirus vaccination. Daniel Berman of Doctors Without Borders has expressed concern that GAVI's delivery of the vaccine may fall short. However, Dagfinn Hoybraten, a GAVI chairman, responded with claims of a 90% compliance rate in a Rwanda vaccine trial. Whether this can be applied on a larger scale, in additional countries, remains to be seen.


Source: Washington Post

-Alan Le

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