Tue, Apr 30, 2013 - Page 9 News List

A healthy start toward immunizing the world

The World Health Assembly’s ‘Decade of Vaccines’ and the UN’s Millennium Development Goals aim to give vaccines to children in the developing world to save more than 20 million lives, prevent almost 1 billion cases of disease and save almost US$12 billion in treatment costs alone

By Ban Ki-moon and Bill Gates

If we are successful, by the end of the decade we will save more than 20 million lives, prevent nearly 1 billion cases of illness and save almost US$12 billion in treatment costs alone. In the process of freeing people from the burden of disease, we will unlock immeasurable human potential.

The MDGs and the Decade of Vaccines prove that focused global development objectives can make a profound difference. They show the power of partnerships that bring together the UN, governments, development agencies, civil society, foundations and the private sector.

Over the next 1,000 days and beyond, our progress will be measured by what we have done to improve the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable members of the human family.

Let us start by recommitting ourselves to realizing the shared vision of a world in which all children get a fair start in life with the protection of vaccines. This generation will thank us, and so will many generations to come.

Ban Ki-moon is the secretary-general of the UN and Bill Gates is co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Copyright: Project Syndicate

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