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African Leaders to Gather in Ethiopia for First-Ever Ministerial Conference on Immunization in Africa

African leaders, including ministers of health, finance, and other line ministries, will gather in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 24-25 February 2016, for the Ministerial Conference on Immunization in Africa — the first-ever ministerial-level convening with a singular focus on ensuring that people across the continent can get access to life-saving vaccines. The conference — hosted by the World Health Organization Regional Offices for Africa (AFRO) and the Eastern Mediterranean (EMRO) in conjunction with the African Union Commission — will provide a powerful platform for African policymakers and advocates to celebrate progress toward expanding immunization coverage; discuss strategies for tackling the biggest challenges facing vaccine efforts; foster country ownership for sustainable financing for immunization; and advocate for greater engagement with all stakeholders to ensure sustainable demand for immunization. “The Ministerial Conference is a unique opportunity to secure buy-in at the highest levels for prioritizing immunization across the continent,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “With strong commitment from everyone, we can make universal access to immunization a reality.” In collaboration with the Ministerial conference, WHO and PATH are hosting an event celebrating the success of the Meningitis Vaccine Project, which resulted in the first tailor-made vaccine for use against meningitis A in the 26 African countries in the meningitis belt.


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