New and underutilized vaccines introduction
Since the inception of the Global Alliance on Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) in 2000, 36 eligible African countries have introduced new and underutilized vaccines into their Expanded Programme of Immunization programmes. These are hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type b-containing vaccines and the yellow fever vaccine. Newer vaccines, such as pneumococcal conjugate vaccines, rotavirus vaccines, human papilloma virus vaccines and conjugate meningococcal meningitis A vaccine are also being considered for introduction.
Rotavirus vaccines are an important intervention that can reduce severe rotavirus associated diarrhoea and child mortality. The use of rotavirus vaccines is part of a comprehensive strategy to control diarrhoeal diseases, including other interventions such as:
- improvements in hygiene and sanitation
- zinc supplementation
- community-based administration of oral rehydration solution
- overall improvements in case management.