Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Efforts to combat pneumonia among 15 high-burdened countries fall short of recommended targets

Date:
November 12, 2010
Source:
International Vaccine Access Center
Summary:
A new report card from IVAC shows efforts to control pneumonia globally fall short of WHO/UNICEF recommendations to help countries achieve Millennium Development Goal targets for child survival.

A Pneumonia Report Card released November 12 by the International Vaccine Access Center (IVAC) on behalf of the Global Coalition against Child Pneumonia reveals where urgent efforts are needed to reach target levels of coverage for the life-saving interventions that can prevent, protect against and treat pneumonia in children.

Related Articles


Pneumonia is the world's leading infectious killer of young children, taking the lives of nearly 1.6 million children under age five every year -- more than AIDS, malaria and measles combined. The Pneumonia Report Card evaluates the pneumonia prevention, protection and treatment efforts of the 15 countries with the most child pneumonia deaths against the pneumonia intervention targets established in the Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Pneumonia (GAPP), issued by WHO and UNICEF in 2009. According to GAPP, up to two-thirds of child pneumonia deaths could be prevented if at least 90 percent of children had access to a few simple, effective pneumonia interventions.

The 15 countries evaluated in the Report Card -- including Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, China, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Tanzania and Uganda -- are responsible for nearly three-quarters of all pneumonia deaths. Children in these countries are anywhere from 17 to 400 times more likely to die of pneumonia than a child living in the United States.

The Report Card provides a total score for each country by evaluating data on seven key interventions identified by GAPP: Prevention measures, including the use of measles, pertussis, pneumococcal and Hib vaccines, respectively; protection measures, including rates of exclusive breastfeeding in the first six months of life; and treatment, namely the rates of children with suspected pneumonia being taken to a health facility and of children with pneumonia receiving treatment with antibiotics. While the GAPP recommended that all countries reach 90 percent coverage on these interventions by 2015 in order to reach Millennium Development Goals targets for child survival, the Report Card finds that country scores range from a high of 61 percent to a low of 23 percent on these measures combined -- all well below GAPP targets.

"For the first time ever, we have a report tracking global progress against pneumonia, the leading killer of children worldwide. I'm optimistic that the report will help focus efforts on improving coverage and saving millions of lives," said Orin Levine, Executive Director of the International Vaccine Access Center (IVAC) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. "Many of the most affected countries plan to introduce new pneumonia vaccines, are expanding community-based case management and have ambitious plans for strengthening health systems. Going from planning to implementation requires funding and continued public attention to pneumonia. Our children deserve nothing less."

Safe and effective vaccines exist to provide protection against the primary causes of pneumonia deaths. The Report Card shows that while some pneumonia vaccines like measles and pertussis are already in widespread use, new pneumonia vaccines against Hib and pneumococcal infections have not yet been adopted in all countries. With support from the GAVI Alliance, nearly all of these countries are expected to increase coverage of existing vaccines, as well as introduce Hib and pneumococcal vaccines, in the next five years. For measles and pertussis vaccines, coverage is generally between 60-90 percent, which lends promise to the expectation that coverage can rapidly rise to these levels for the Hib and pneumococcal conjugate vaccines.

"Every 20 seconds, a child dies from pneumonia. That's 4,300 young lives lost every day, and nearly all of those are children from developing countries. We can prevent this tragedy," said Helen Evans, acting CEO of the GAVI Alliance. "Safe, effective vaccines exist that can save lives and also set up millions more children in the world's poorest countries for a healthy start to life. With the political will, we can fund those vaccines and other measures to turn the tide against pneumonia."

Generally, coverage levels for protection and treatment interventions -- including breastfeeding and treatment with antibiotics -- tend to be lower than coverage with immunizations, demonstrating that renewed efforts to raise these levels are urgently needed. Exclusive breastfeeding -- the key intervention to protecting against pneumonia in the GAPP -- is characterized by sub-optimal coverage levels ranging from <10 percent to 60 percent in the 15 countries with highest pneumonia disease burden. Interventions to treat pneumonia in the Report Card countries also fall far below GAPP target levels, with only <10 percent to 50 percent of infected children receiving antibiotics.

"Reaching every child with life-saving antibiotics is achievable and affordable. Working with health workers and governments around the world, Save the Children is helping assure that every child who needs treatment receives it," said Mary Beth Powers, Director of Save the Children's Campaign for Newborn and Child Survival. "Together, we can save the lives of millions of children."

Based on existing information, this Report Card shows that increases in coverage of all GAPP interventions are urgently needed. With support from the GAVI Alliance, introductions of Hib and pneumococcal conjugate vaccines are expected to occur in the next five years in nearly all of these countries.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by International Vaccine Access Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

International Vaccine Access Center. "Efforts to combat pneumonia among 15 high-burdened countries fall short of recommended targets." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101112080003.htm>.
International Vaccine Access Center. (2010, November 12). Efforts to combat pneumonia among 15 high-burdened countries fall short of recommended targets. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101112080003.htm
International Vaccine Access Center. "Efforts to combat pneumonia among 15 high-burdened countries fall short of recommended targets." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101112080003.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, October 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) The World Health Organization said on Friday that millions of doses of two experimental Ebola vaccines could be ready for use in 2015 and five more experimental vaccines would start being tested in March. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. He's quarantined in a hospital. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins