According to official data released today by WHO and UNICEF, 23 million children missed out on receiving essential vaccines through routine immunization services in 2020 — 3.7 million higher than in 2019.

The majority of nations suffered declines in childhood vaccination rates last year, according to the most recent set of comprehensive global data on childhood immunization, the first official data to reflect global service disruptions brought on by COVID-19.

Our loved ones are now more protected from diseases than ever before thanks to medical science advancements and vaccines in particular. Due primarily to vaccines, some diseases that previously wounded or killed thousands of people have been eradicated.

Importance of vaccine

Children are protected by vaccinations against serious, occasionally fatal diseases such as COVID-19, measles, polio, meningitis, and whooping cough. As immunization schedules are created to give children immunity early in life before they may be exposed to life-threatening infections, timely vaccination is essential. In addition to making children more susceptible to illness when vaccinations are postponed or skipped, vaccine-preventable diseases can spread quickly when vaccination rates drop even a little.

There are numerous benefits to immunizing kids. It can, most crucially, save their lives as well as the lives of others they care about. Vaccine-preventable diseases continue to be a hazard despite the safety and effectiveness of frequent vaccinations.

The provision of vaccination services has been severely disrupted in many parts of the world as a result of the substantial diversion of manpower and resources to assist the COVID-19 response. Clinics have closed or had their hours curtailed in some nations, and people may have been unwilling to seek medical attention out of fear of infection or because accessing services was difficult because of lockdown procedures and transportation difficulties.

By ensuring that everyone has access to vaccines, we must all work together to assist countries to overcome COVID-19 and restart routine immunization programs. It is necessary for the present and future health and happiness of millions of kids and the communities in which they live.

The organizations are collaborating with nations and partners to achieve the ambitious goals of the global Immunization Agenda 2030, which includes halving the number of completely unvaccinated children, or “zero doses,” and increasing the uptake of newer, life-saving vaccines like rotavirus or pneumococcus in low- and middle-income nations.

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