PAHO Director: Vaccination gaps must be closed

    PAHO Director Dr. Carissa F. Etienne (Image via PAHO)

    With 2.7 million children in the Americas not receiving essential vaccines in 2020, PAHO is calling for these gaps to be closed.

    In a media release, PAHO Director Dr Carissa Etienne says while officials laboured to immunize populations against COVID-19, other routine immunization programmes were severely affected.

    In fact, she believes the last two years have set back almost three decades of vaccination progress against polio and measles.

    This, Dr Etienne warns, creates a real risk for the reintroduction of these illnesses.

    She was speaking at the launch of the 20th Vaccination Week in the Americas.

    This is an initiative which seeks to target children who are yet to be vaccinated against childhood diseases like measles, mumps and rubella.

    Vaccination Week was started in 2002, prompted by a measles outbreak in Colombia and Venezuela.