National Immunization Awareness Month

August is National Immunization Awareness Month! Below are some facts about immunizations.

 

Immunization Facts

  • Immunizations prevent 2-3 million deaths per year. 
    • An additional 1.5 million deaths could be avoided if global immunization coverage improves. 
  • Immunizations are one of the most successful and cost-effective public health interventions. 
  • More children are getting their immunizations than ever before. 
    • In 2016, approximately 116.5 million (about 86%) children under the age of 1 received their diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine. 
  • About 19.5 million children did not receive their diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine. 
    • About 60% of these children live in Angola, Brazil, Dominican Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, and South Africa. 
  • Progress has been made in vaccination research and development. 
    • A new vaccine against dengue has been piloted in several countries. 
    • In 2018, three African countries will pilot a new malaria vaccine. 
  • Meningitis A epidemics nearly eliminated in Africa through immunizations. 
    • Meningitis A is a disease that causes severe brain damage and is deadly. 
    • Since the introduction of the vaccine, the meningitis A vaccine has been controlled and almost eliminated the disease from 26 African countries that are predominately referred to as the “meningitis belt”. 
  • Global measles mortality has decreased by 79%. 
    • This is a drop from approximately 651,600 deaths in 2000 to 134,200 deaths in 2015. 
  • Regions of the Americas have been declared measles free. 
    • In 2016, the Americas became the first region to be declared measles free. 
  • The world is closer to eradicating polio. 
    • In 2016, the virus was restricted to Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Nigeria. 
    • 2 of the 3 strains of polio have been eliminated. 
  • Maternal and neonatal tetanus have been eliminated in the South-East Asia Region. 
    • This region is the second of the six regions to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus. 
  • Vaccines serve as the frontline defense against antimicrobial resistance. 

For more information, go to http://www.who.int/features/factfiles/immunization/en/

Information Courtesy of the WHO