The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is pushing harder than ever for government leaders around the world to increase vaccination investments.
In a keynote address yesterday to the 64th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates spoke for nearly half an hour to health ministers from 193 countries about the importance of "seeking good health care for every human being."
"I believe we have the opportunity to make a new future in which global health is the cornerstone of global prosperity," he said.
Gates called on the assembly to make this "the Decade of Vaccines," with some basic goals: eradicate polio early in this decade; build a system capable of delivering vaccines to every child; make five or six new vaccines available to all children around the world. With these investments, Gates said, the world "can save 4 million lives by 2015 and 10 million lives by 2020."
Another challenge Gates cited was lowering the cost of antigenic materials, such as pentavalent, pneumococcus, and rotavirus vaccines. The Gates Foundation is working with vaccine manufacturers to cut prices of those inoculations in half by 2016. Lower costs would be beneficial to many countries around the world that are reeling from budget woes. … Read more