Via CIDRAP, Robert Roos writes: UNICEF, WHO push for inactivated polio vaccine. Excerpt:
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) recently announced that inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) will be available to low-income countries for as little as $1 a dose, as global health groups push for introducing the vaccine into routine immunization programs by the end of next year.
The Feb 28 announcement was made the same day the World Health Organization (WHO) issued an updated position paper on polio vaccines, calling for using IPV to guard against the possible risk of re-emergence of type 2 polio after the withdrawal of oral type 2 vaccines.
The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) chimed in on the same day with recommendations for detecting and controlling polio in Europe, in response to the recent detection of wild-type polio viruses in Israel and an outbreak of the disease in war-torn Syria.
IPV at affordable prices
IPV requires an injection and is considerably more expensive than oral vaccines. UNICEF said, however, that its bidding process has made it possible to offer IPV at affordable prices. The aim is to help introduce the vaccine in accordance with the "ambitious timeline" of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative's (GPEI's) Eradication and Endgame Strategic Plan 2013-2018.
The vaccine will be available to countries supported by GAVI (the GlobalAlliance for Vaccines and Immunization) for as low as 0.75 euros, or about $1 US, per dose in 10-dose vials, UNICEF said.
For middle-income countries, 10-dose vials will be available from UNICEF starting in July at a price of 1.49 to 2.40 euros per dose (about $2.04 to $3.28 US). Also, IPV will be available to both GAVI-supported and middle-income countries in five-dose vials at $1.90 per dose and in single-dose vials at $2.80 each, the agency said.
That compares with an average of about 13 US cents per dose of oral polio vaccine (OPV), according to GPEI data.
"GPEI's plan calls for the introduction of IPV into routine immunisation programmes globally by the end of 2015," UNICEF said. "More than 120 countries have yet to introduce IPV, more than half of which are eligible for GAVI support."
The goal is to achieve broad use of IPV before the phased removal of OPV between 2016 and 2018, the agency said.