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#VaccinesWork for All


The aim of World Immunization Week is to promote the use of vaccines to protect people of all ages against disease. The week takes place from 24-30 April. Every year, millions of lives are saved thanks to immunization and it is recognized widely as one of the most successful and cost effective health interventions. However, nearly 20 million children are still unvaccinated and under-vaccinated worldwide.


Immunization and COVID-19

In the lead up to this year’s World Immunization Week, countries across the globe are in the throes of responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. International development projects help countries protect critical immunization services during the COVID-19 pandemic, so that ground is not lost in the fight against vaccine-preventable diseases.

Humanitarian Response and Socio-Economic Impacts

On this World Immunization Week, learn about how international development projects help to ensure the provision of routine immunizations in developing countries, build resilient health systems, and support universal health coverage.

“Unacceptably, it’s often those who are most at risk – the poorest, the most marginalized, those touched by conflict or forced from their homes – who are persistently missed.”

Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO

The World Bank | Continuous Support of Childhood Immunizations

The World Bank Group (WBG) strongly supports childhood immunizations, as expanding access to vaccines is crucial for eliminating infectious diseases and achieving Universal Health Coverage. The WBG was one of the founding members of the Global Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) working to create access to new and underused vaccines for children living in the world’s poorest countries.


The WBG is also a global partner in the fight to eradicate polio, working with the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) – a public-private partnership led by national governments with five partners, including Rotary International and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


In countries affected by instability and conflict, the hardest to reach and most marginalized are the most vulnerable. In Yemen, the crisis has taken a heavy toll on the country's children. In support to protect the children, the WBG has channeled its funding through WHO and UNICEF to ensure the provision of continuous critical support for the delivery of essential health services – including national polio campaigns. The contribution has resulted in the vaccination of 1.5 million Yemeni children under five years-old.


All World Bank Group operations in Yemen were suspended when the conflict worsened, but a partnership with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization (WHO) has allowed for the continuation of key activities of two Bank-funded health projects.


The Health and Population Project has provided critical support for the national polio campaign that has managed to vaccinate 1.5 million Yemeni children despite the conflict.

Asian Development Bank | Systems Strengthening for Effective Coverage of New Vaccines in the Pacific

The proposed Supporting Effective Coverage of Health Technology in the Pacific Project by the Asian Development Bank forms part of the regional response to reduce the number of cervical cancer cases and other infectious diseases in children and women.


The project proposes to use the introduction of new vaccines and early detection through communicable disease platforms to drive necessary improvements in the public health system in selected Pacific DMCs in line with the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases and Public Health Emergency.


“The project primarily aims to strengthen immunization systems by using the opportunity of introducing a new intervention (vaccines) into four health systems. Vaccines are recognized as one of the most cost-effective health investments, and a well-performing immunization program is an essential component of a functioning public health system.” – ADB Health Specialist for the Pacific Ms. Inez Mikkelsen-Lopez.


Over 580,000 people across the four countries will benefit from the project, which will improve overall immunization coverage rates and support greater efficiency of primary health services.


Sustainable Development Goals

UNDB is committed to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Decade of Action.


Goal 3: Good Health and Well Being at all ages is essential to sustainable development.


International development projects foster better health systems, improve sanitation and hygiene, and increase access to health coverage.


UNDB facilitates global health and well being by supporting and encouraging investment in countries’ efforts to achieve universal health coverage, and provide quality and affordable health services to everyone.


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