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On 20 April, for just the second time in history, 180 World Health Organization member states will mark World Immunization Week, in order to promote vaccines as one of the most powerful tools available for good health.
A Powerful Health Tool
· Immunization saves the lives of between 2 and 3 million people every year.
· Still, 1.5 million children die each year from diseases that are preventable through immunization.
· That’s nearly one in five child deaths worldwide, preventable through immunization (17% of all mortalities from 0-59 months).
Medair’s Vaccination Teams
Swiss NGO Medair vaccinates tens of thousands of children every year in vulnerable countries like D.R. Congo, South Sudan, and Somalia/Somaliland. In 2012, more than 90,000 people were vaccinated through Medair programmes. Our health teams travel to small, remote communities that don’t have access to health care in order to give children a fighting chance for survival.
Imagine travelling countless miles through hot deserts and sweltering jungles while keeping vaccines as frigidly cold as possible—it’s an extraordinary logistical challenge, one that must be experienced to be believed. After our health teams reach these remote communities, we work closely with local leaders and individuals to help them understand the life-saving benefits of vaccination and encourage mothers to bring their children for immunization.
Suspected Measles in South Sudan
We are currently responding to a suspected measles outbreak in South Sudan, with 17 reported deaths. Find out more information about our measles vaccination campaign in South Sudan.
For media: Interviews are available with Medair field teams. High-quality photos are available of vaccination campaigns in vivid locales such as dusty cattle camps and remote tribal villages.
Contact Janneke de Kruijf – Media Officer to set up an interview or for a selection of photos to meet your World Immunization Week needs.
Janneke de Kruijf – Media Officer
Tel. +41 21 694 8472 – Mobile +41 78 635 30 95.
Sources: WHO World Immunization Week 2013 Campaign Essentials
Medair helps people who are suffering in remote and devastated communities around the world survive crisis, recover with dignity, and develop skills to build a better future.