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Africa CDC and UNICEF extend partnership to strengthen immunisation of children in Africa 

The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) and UNICEF have announced an extended partnership dedicated to enhancing primary healthcare, supply chain management, pooled procurement, and local manufacturing, with a primary focus on immunization for children across the continent. 

 This collaborative effort, an extension of the 2022-2024 Partnership Framework Agreement, aims to achieve the goals outlined in the African Union Agenda 2063. 

H.E Dr Jean Kaseya, Director General of Africa CDC, and Ted Chaiban, UNICEF Deputy Executive Director for Humanitarian Action and Supply Operations, formalized the expanded partnership agreement in Addis Ababa. 

The intensified collaboration comes in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, which laid bare the vulnerabilities of healthcare systems and exposed challenges in medical supply chains.  

H.E Jean Kaseya expressed optimism about the partnership, highlighting its potential to optimize supply chain management, operationalize pooled procurement mechanisms, empower community health workers, and advance local manufacturing.  

He emphasized that these efforts would ultimately strengthen immunization systems, reducing outbreaks and epidemics on the continent. 

The partnership addresses a critical issue – the under-vaccination of millions of children in Africa. UNICEF’s report, “The State of the World’s Children 2023: For Every Child, Vaccination,” revealed that 12.7 million children were under-vaccinated in 2021, with 8.7 million receiving zero doses.  

The Partnership for Vaccine Manufacturing, a key initiative, aims to manufacture 60% of the continent’s vaccine needs by 2040, supporting the development of robust and self-reliant health systems.  

The extended partnership between Africa CDC and UNICEF represents a concerted effort to address Africa’s pressing health challenges, making tangible and sustainable impacts on the health and well-being of children and communities across the continent while safeguarding Africa’s health security.