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Vaccines Europe welcomes the European Commission initiative to launch the EU Joint Action on Vaccination. This EU Joint Action represents a unique opportunity to address common challenges faced by the EU Member States as highlighted in the Council Conclusions on vaccinations as an effective tool in public health, in December 2014. This becomes even more relevant against a background of increasing vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks leading to avoidable death and disability, the increase of antimicrobial resistance and the ageing of the population.
The vaccine industry shares the commitment of the entire public health community to protect European citizens of all ages against infectious diseases. Vaccines Europe is committed to working with stakeholders to ensure a reliable supply of safe, effective and innovative vaccines in Europe and worldwide. Vaccines Europe has identified a number of key areas, which could significantly strengthen vaccination in Europe and facilitate the achievements of European Immunisation goals.
Access and download our paper here.
24-30 April 2017: This week is the European Immunisation Week (EIW2017) that is being celebrated across the European Region. Under the slogan “Vaccines work” the EIW 2017 will focus on the need for and benefits of immunisation at every stage in life.
It is well acknowledged that childhood vaccination is one of the most important medical achievements of the 20th Century. The WHO estimates that vaccination prevents 2-3 million deaths every year across the Globe, and has enormous positive impacts on healthcare systems. However, vaccine-preventable diseases also have significant impacts on adult mortality, health and quality of life. By 2050, the world’s population aged 60 years and older is expected to reach 2 billion, an increase from 900 million today. Increased longevity and lower birth rates are dramatically changing demography in Europe and around the world. With the ageing population, the public health impact of vaccine preventable diseases and their complications in adults are likely to grow.
Over the last few decades there has been a shift in the burden of diseases that were traditionally those of childhood towards older age groups, as explained in the ECDC presentation on “Finding the balance in life-course vaccination” given at the European Health Forum Gastein 2016.
In addition, ageing is associated with a higher prevalence of non-communicable diseases but also with more frequent and severe infections such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease but also with more frequent and severe infections such as influenza, pneumococcal disease, pertussis and shingles. These diseases may increase the severity of underlying pre-existing chronic diseases and lead to functional decline, loss of autonomy, disability or death and for which comprehensive preventive approaches are key.
Vaccines Europe welcomes this yearly WHO Europe initiative, and encourages you to share our immunisation related messages.