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World Immunization Week

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Vaccines work: We are protected together

Celebrated in the last week of April, World Immunization Week aims to promote the use of vaccines to protect people of all ages against disease. Immunization saves millions of lives every year and is widely recognized as one of the world’s most successful and cost-effective health interventions. Yet, there are still nearly 20 million unvaccinated and under-vaccinated children in the world today.

The theme of this year’s campaign is Protected Together: Vaccines Work!, and the campaign will celebrate Vaccine Heroes from around the world – from parents and community members to health workers and innovators – who help ensure we are all protected, at all ages, through the power of vaccines.

2019 campaign objectives

The main goal of the campaign is to raise awareness about the critical importance of full immunization throughout life

As part of the 2019 campaign, WHO and partners aim to:

  • Demonstrate the value of vaccines for the health of children, communities and the world.

  • Highlight the need to build on immunization progress while addressing gaps, including through increased investment.

  • Show how routine immunization is the foundation for strong, resilient health systems and universal health coverage.

Why immunization matters

Expanding access to immunization is vital for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, poverty reduction and universal health coverage. Routine immunization provides a point of contact for health care at the beginning of life and offers every child the chance at a healthy life from the earliest beginnings and into old age.

Immunization is also a fundamental strategy in achieving other health priorities, from controlling viral hepatitis, to curbing antimicrobial resistance, and providing a platform for adolescent health and improving antenatal and newborn care.

Key messages

  • We need the help of all heroes everywhere to reach the 1 in 10 kids who still do not have access to vaccines.

  • At all ages, vaccines save lives. They protect our children and they protect us all as adults.

  • Vaccines mean lives lived – they mean a brighter future for our children and theirs to come.

  • We can ensure vaccines reach the people that need them most. You can be a vaccine hero.

    • Ensure you & your family are vaccinated on time, every time

    • Travelling? Know before you go - ensure your family’s vaccines are up to date.

    • Be a vaccine champion – Talk to people about the benefits of vaccines. Vaccines save lives, help children learn & grow, & prevent serious illness & disability.

    • Know the facts. Any licensed vaccine has been rigorously tested before use to make sure it is safe and effective for you and your family.

    • Health workers: Every check up is an opportunity to check in on vaccination, for ✓ children, ✓youth, ✓ adults, ✓ the elderly

World Health Organization 
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Source: 2019 National Health Observances, National Health Information Center, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC.

Earlier Event: April 22
Every Kid Healthy™ Week
Later Event: April 24
World Meningitis Day