Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Bill Gate's "Decade of Vaccines"

Increasing investment on vaccines has the potential to save billions of lives. The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation committed $10 billion to research this decade alone- hence the name "the decade of vaccines." Bill Gates recently stated at the annual assembly of the World Health Organization that five or six new vaccines will possibly be available in the next ten years. These vaccinations could prevent 4 million deaths by 2015 and 10 million deaths by 2020.

"Vaccines are a miracle- with just a few doses they can prevent deadly disease for a lifetime."-- Melinda Gates. Vaccines have been made the Gate's Foundations number one priority because the amazing impact they make.

At the WHO annual assembly Gates advised pharmaceutical manufactures to make these vaccines affordable for poor countries. He declared that all countries should aim to have 90 percent immunization coverage against diseases, including polio, meningitis and pneumonia. He also stated that a strengthening of immunization programs against infectious disease is needed. However, these goals cannot be met without leadership. Leadership and funding is crucial to really making this the "decade of vaccines" and saving lives. Funding gaps still remain and others must join the effort.

-Gabrielle Gurian