Written by Frank Khumalo
More than 500 delegates from Africa gather in Cape Town, South Africa this week to discuss the urgent issue of children under five years still dying from common vaccine preventable diseases.
Latest World Health Organisation’s (WHO) statistics are that over 1.5 million children die every year from infectious diseases that are preventable with currently available, cheap and cost effective vaccines. Outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases such as polio, measles, diarrhoea and pneumonia are common in Africa.
The conference jointly organized by the Vaccines for Africa Initiative (VACFA) at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and the National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS) opens on the evening of November 8 and closes on November 11. It will, among other issues, promote vaccine advocacy in Africa and other developing countries.
Prof Marian Jacobs, Dean of the Health Sciences Faculty at UCT, will launch this important event on Thursday, 8 November.