Gavi sets ambitious goal to immunize 300 million people by 2025

Posted on Aug 30, 2019

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Vaccine Alliance launches US$ 7.4 billion fundraising drive to deliver the highest return on investment to date offering broad protection against 18 diseases, saving up to eight million lives from 2021-25

Developing countries set to make the largest investment in their own vaccine programs in history, more than doubling the amount invested in the 2016-2020 period

Sustained investment needed to secure prosperity for the next generation, prevent a resurgence of diseases and protect from frequent outbreaks made worse by climate change, urbanization, and conflicts

Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance has called on donors to back plans to immunize an additional 300 million children, saving up to eight million lives, in developing countries between 2021 and 2025, launching a fundraising drive of at least US$ 7.4 billion. A total of US$ 3.6 billion will be invested by developing country governments in their own vaccine programs over the period, up from US$ 1.6 billion in 2016-2020.

“Gavi has made an enormous contribution to the health of Ghana’s children over the last two decades: cases of diseases like measles, whooping cough and rubella have dropped to almost zero, and child mortality has halved,” said Nana Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana. “Much of this progress is due to the power of immunization and the work of the Alliance, which has stood by us as we have brought lifesaving vaccines to every part of the country. Now is the time for all of us to step up and help the Vaccine Alliance to continue its mission of ensuring that every child has access to immunization, to good health, and a platform for a successful future.”

The Investment Opportunity sets out how Gavi will provide the most comprehensive and cost-effective preventive health package in history. In Gavi’s first phase, beginning in 2000, it supported six basic vaccines; by 2025 this will rise to 18, including new support for inactivated polio vaccine (IPV), rabies and multivalent meningococcal vaccines, as well as funding for an Ebola vaccine stockpile once it is prequalified by the WHO. In its next phase the Vaccine Alliance will protect children against childhood diseases, adolescents against cervical cancer through the scaling up of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine support, and the world against deadly outbreaks of Ebola, cholera, yellow fever and meningitis through support for vaccine stockpiles.

The 2021-25 Investment Opportunity was launched at a special event at the Seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in Yokohama co-hosted by the Japanese government, which has supported Gavi with around US$ 150 million since 2011. Access to vaccination was also included in the Osaka G20 Leaders’ Declaration in June. TICAD 7 has brought together representatives of African countries, international organizations, development partners, private companies, civil society and others under the theme of ‘advancing Africa's development through people, technology and innovation’.

“We are really proud that today marked a remarkable launch of Gavi’s replenishment process,” said Masahiko Kiya, Ambassador for TICAD of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. “At this start of the process, we would like to reiterate the importance of domestic resource mobilization, finding new funding sources and new donors. We believe that great momentum has been built up towards a successful replenishment conference in the UK next year.”

Since Gavi’s inception in 2000, the Vaccine Alliance has helped to immunize over 760 million people against deadly diseases, saving more than 13 million lives. In the 2021-2025 period, the Vaccine Alliance aims to reach an additional 300 million children, saving a further 7-8 million lives. This will bring the total number of children vaccinated with Gavi support to more than 1.1 billion, saving at least 22 million lives.

Due in part to the success of Gavi’s work creating healthier vaccine markets and empowering countries to take on more of their own vaccine financing, the Alliance will be able to achieve these ambitious targets with less funding than that needed for the 2016-2020 period, for which Gavi secured US$ 7.5 billion. The Vaccine Alliance’s work with vaccine markets has helped to halve the total cost of fully immunizing a child with pentavalent, pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccines since 2010. By 2020 the Vaccine Alliance will have helped 18 countries successfully transition out of Gavi support, so they are fully funding their own vaccine programs.

“Over the past two decades the Vaccine Alliance has helped to protect a generation against some of the world’s deadliest diseases,” said Dr. Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. “However, 1.5 million people are still dying every year from vaccine-preventable diseases, while climate change, conflict, and urbanization are combining to make it easier for outbreaks to spread. This calls for an urgent response to ensure people continue to be protected against disease, to prevent deadly outbreaks and to help the next generation prosper.”

“An investment in Gavi not only saves lives, but it also boosts economies,” said Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chair of the Gavi Board and former Nigeria Finance Minister. “Each dollar invested in immunization gives a return of up to US$ 54 in wider societal benefits. Children who are vaccinated are more likely to go to school. Their relatives aren’t forced to give up work to look after their sick children or fall into poverty thanks to often-debilitating healthcare costs. That’s why a fully-funded Gavi replenishment is expected to bring as much as US$ 100 billion in economic benefits by 2025, helping to build a healthier, more prosperous world for all of us.”

Key pledges for the 2021-25 period include:

  • To vaccinate an additional 300 million children, averting between 7-8 million future deaths and bringing the total number of children vaccinated with Gavi support since its inception in 2000 to over one billion.
  • To empower countries to take on vaccine financing and ensure the successful transition of a further 10 countries into self-financing, in addition to the 18 countries that transitioned in 2016-2020. Gavi-supported countries are set to invest US$ 3.6 billion in their own vaccine programmes – 41% of the total vaccine programme spend – while Gavi is set to invest US$ 5.3 billion.
  • To deliver over 3.2 billion doses of life-saving vaccines to 55 eligible countries, providing the most comprehensive package of vaccination to protect against 18 diseases.
  • To respond to emergencies with Gavi-supported vaccine stockpiles of meningitis, yellow fever and cholera, and to be ready to invest up to US$ 150 million in a new Ebola vaccine stockpile once prequalified by the WHO.
  • To invest US$ 800 million to further accelerate the rollout of inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) and provide global insurance for polio eradication, protecting against a re-emergence of the disease.
  • To empower women and girls through gender-focused immunization programming approaches and accelerate roll-out of the HPV vaccine to girls, dependant on an expansion in supply.
  • Generate US$ 900 million in donor cost savings in 2021-2025 through reduced prices on the vaccines offered in the 2016-2020 period.

The Investment Opportunity launch follows the Gavi Board’s approval in June of a new high-level strategy for the 2021-25 period, focusing on leaving no one behind without immunization. The strategy prioritises reaching communities that are currently missed, such as those in urban slums, remote areas, and conflict settings.

Gavi’s total predicted expenditure for the 2021-25 period is expected to reach US$ 9.4 billion, however, Gavi expects to have resources of US$ 2 billion already available for the next strategic period. These resources consist mainly of proceeds from existing donor pledges to the International Finance Facility for immunization (IFFIm), an innovative finance mechanism which uses long-term pledges from donor governments to sell ‘vaccine bonds’ in the capital markets, making large volumes of funds immediately available for Gavi programs. Further funding is available from some preliminary pledge extensions, investment income and a drawdown from Gavi’s cash and investment reserve.

Gavi’s unique public-private partnership model means it needs predictable financing to allow manufacturers and implementing countries to forecast demand over a five-year period. This helps to drive value for money and maximize the impact of every dollar invested in the Vaccine Alliance. The replenishment process will culminate in a special event hosted by the UK government, Gavi’s largest donor for the 2016-20 period, in summer 2020.

“Thanks to the leading partnership between the UK and Gavi, 760 million children have had access to vital immunizations since 2000,” said UK International Development Secretary Alok Sharma. “But some of the world’s most vulnerable people are still dying from vaccine-preventable diseases, that is why we are committed to delivering Gavi’s new ambition to vaccinate 300 million more people by 2025. Next year the UK will host Gavi’s replenishment conference, this will be a momentous opportunity for global donors to come together and realize Gavi’s ambition.”

Two new investments in Gavi’s INFUSE accelerator programme to help scale up innovative solutions that can help reach every child with vaccines were also announced at the event in Yokohama:

  • Alwaleed Philanthropies announced US$ 5 million in extra funding between 2020 and 2024.
  • Japanese growth equity fund Asia Africa Investment and Consulting (AAIC) agreed to establish a framework of investment of up to US$ 3 million over the next two years, with a possible extension of one year.