Italy features as a major donor for Malawi’s pneumonia immunisation campaign drive as part of an Italian – led world – wide initiative, known as AMC (Advance Market Commitment).
Every year 67,000 children die in Malawi before they reach the age of five as a result of pneumonia, malaria or diarrhoea.
The mass vaccination campaign was launched last Saturday at street festival in the nation’s capital city Lilongwe, for World Pneumonia Day when the first child to be immunised received her jabs.
The function was presided over by the Minister of Health Jean Kalirani and co – organised by the Global Alliance for Vaccine Immunisation, a public-private global health partnership which brings together governments with the vaccine industry and philanthropists including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Donor Countries also took part in the event, USAID, UNICEF and the Italian Consul to Lilongwe being present.
The vaccination campaign in Malawi is part of a worldwide operation that came as a result of joint international efforts. Numerous actors participated in an Italian – led revolutionary project to involve pharmaceutical companies in the fight against pneumonia (AMC, Advance Market Commitment).
A total pledge of 1.5 billion dollars was announced at a Ministerial meeting in Rome, in February 2007 for the making and marketing of pneumococcal vaccine.
Italy chose to stake the most substantial contribution among all actors involved, offering a pledge of 635 million dollars (the UK provided 485 millions, Canada 200, Russia 80, Norway 50, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation 50).
Now that AMC is in full swing it is estimated that up to 2030 7 million children worldwide will be saved by the vaccines produced and purchased under the plan.