During the ASEAN’s annual summit, nations have committed to strengthen immunization and achieve vaccine security.
“Overwhelming evidence that demonstrates the benefits of immunization as one of the most successful and cost-effective health interventions known,” said with recognition by the members of states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
“Vaccines have saved countless lives, eradicated smallpox, lowered the global incidence of polio by 99 percent and reduced illness, disability and death from vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs),” they said.
The initiative is in collaboration of 10 countries, as they warned that vaccine shortage in a region will increase the risk of preventable diseases.
Moreover, ASEAN urged member states to further promote and support cooperation through “capacity building and training, sharing of best practices.”
It also reached out to intergovernmental agencies, regional organizations, experts and other stakeholders, to strengthen cooperation in promoting ASEAN vaccine security.
Vaccine security is known as “sustained, uninterrupted and timely supply of affordable vaccine of assured quality,” according to UNICEF.
After almost 20 years of being polio-free, the disease has surfaced in the country recently, along with a national dengue epidemic and measles outbreak.