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Media - published on 16 Jul 2019

Poorest children at risk as global vaccination rates stall

Inga Vesper from SciDevNet reports on the latest data released from the World Health Organization, showing that global vaccination rates for the most common childhood diseases have stalled and remain far from the 95 per cent needed to prevent new outbreaks.

For the first time, the WHO data covered vaccinations against Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). Researchers found that, in 2018, 90 countries around the world offered the HPV vaccine. However, only 13 of these are low-income countries, and 70 per cent of girls around the world are still missing out on the vaccine.

Jayasree K. Iyer, executive director of the Access to Medicine Foundation is quoted in the article, explaining that HPV is still not well understood worldwide, making parents reluctant to allow their children to be vaccinated. “Diseases such as cervical cancer are also very private,” she said. “In many places reproductive health is not prioritised, and often stigmatised.”

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