The project goal is to immunize 100,000 of the most disadvantaged children across the Pacific by 2021 in 9 Pacific Island nations
Despite improvements in immunisation rates across the Pacific, there remains much to be done to ensure all children receive routine immunisation and health care. As a result diseases such as pneumonia and diarrhoea remain the leading causes of child mortality across the region. For example, in the remote Pacific Island Country of Kiribati, shockingly 1 in 17 children die before their fifth birthday.
The nine Pacific Island nations are - Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu – Rotary will introduce three new life-saving vaccinations to prevent diseases including severe diarrhoea, pneumonia, blood infections (such as sepsis) and meningitis. As access to health screenings and treatment is poor across these countries, the program includes immunising adolescent girls against certain types of cervical cancer.
The central partner in the project is UNICEF who will be responsible for implementation & evaluation. Also, The Asian Development Bank is assisting in a major way in 4 of the Pacific Island nations. It is worthy to note that the Murdoch Children's Research Institute at the Royal Children's Hospital is developing the implementation program for the Asian Development Bank.
There are three vaccines being administered:
- Rotavirus - against severe types of Diarrhoea;
- Pneumococcal Conjugate - against pneumonia & blood infections;
- Human Papilloma Virus - against some cervical cancers
Funding requirement for the project is approx. $3million for:
- Vaccines - Procurement;
- Supplies - Providing Cold chain equipment, other supplies and logistics;
- Education - of healthcare workers, communities and partners and
- Technical Support - policy, management and system strengthening
However, this is just the beginning. Rotary’s support will help build the broader health system for the sustainable delivery of vaccines, so that generations of children will continue to benefit in the long term – a truly inspiring Rotary legacy.
If you wish to know more or are interested to assist, Chris Wang has made himself always available - anytime, anywhere.
Chris Wang: firstname.lastname@example.org