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Press Releases

March 1, 2019

Protecting People around the World from Infectious Diseases through Immunization: JICA signs Memorandum of Cooperation with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance

photosigning ceremony

On February 26, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) [1].

Under the MOC, JICA expertise in addressing health challenges in developing countries and Gavi expertise in vaccines and how to scale up immunization will be mutually shared with the aim of preventing avoidable deaths in children by improving the immunization rate in developing countries. The objective of the MOC is to contribute to the achievement of universal health coverage [2] and the promotion of human security through the efforts of both agencies to improve child health.

Partnership efforts under the MOC will work toward more effective use of the Maternal and Child Health Handbook, whose distribution in many countries JICA has supported, and the digitization of the Handbook. This is expected to lead to a higher immunization rate and other benefits with the aim of all people being able to live healthy lives without anyone being left behind.

As the possibilities of synergy between the Gavi INFUSE program [3] and the JICA’s public-private partnership programs are explored, it is expected that innovative scientific ideas will be created and developed in the vaccine and immunization sectors by private industry.

Despite the progress made in medicine and the establishment of treatment and prevention technologies, there remain many people around the world who suffer even now from preventable infectious diseases due to inadequate health care access.

With more than 90 offices around the world, JICA will work with Gavi, which provides vaccine and immunization support in many countries, to further collaborate on the field level and take action to protect the people’s health, including children’s lives, through improved immunization programs. JICA and Gavi will also continue to work toward the achievement of SDG Goal 3, “Good Health and Well-being” for all.

1. Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance
Gavi is an international organisation that was created in 2000 to improve access to new and underused vaccines for children living in the world’s poorest countries. Based in Geneva, Switzerland, Gavi is the Vaccine Alliance, which brings together public and private sectors with the shared goal of creating equal access to vaccines for children, wherever they live.

2. Universal Health Coverage: UHC)
UHC means that all individuals and communities receive the health services they need without suffering financial hardship. It includes the full spectrum of essential, quality health services, from health promotion to prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care.
UHC enables everyone to access the services that address the most significant causes of disease and death, and ensures that the quality of those services is good enough to improve the health of the people who receive them.

3. INFUSE(Innovation for Uptake, Scale and Equity inImmunization)
INFUSE (Innovation for Uptake, Scale and Equity in Immunization) helps improve vaccine delivery systems by connecting high-impact innovations with the countries that need them most. Vaccine delivery systems in developing countries often rely on technologies and approaches that have not been updated in years or sometimes decades. This can slow or even stop the delivery of life-saving vaccines. There are many potential solutions but they lack the right market conditions for scale-up. Businesses offering new technology frequently struggle to secure the necessary funding, while governments can lack the expertise required to select appropriate, cost-effective solutions. INFUSE aims to address this challenge by connecting tried and tested innovations to the countries that need them most. Launched in 2016, each year the most promising innovations are selected as INFUSE Pacesetters to receive GAVI and partner support. Over three years the INFUSE program has selected 18 Pacesetters, of which 12 work in the Indo-Pacific region.

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