Our Mission is to Assure the World’s Readiness to Respond to the Next Pandemic Through Transformative Change in Vaccine Access and Immunization Policy, with a Focus on Low- and Middle-Income Countries.
WHY WE EXIST
The COVID-19 pandemic crisis is a stark reminder that pandemic threats evolve in their trajectory depending on how well countries are prepared to respond – meaning how quickly vaccinations can be developed and deployed to effectively reduce morbidity, mortality, and economic loss in every corner of the world.
We must remind ourselves that influenza remains a grave threat. An influenza pandemic like that of 1918 – could have an even bigger impact than COVID-19, with an estimated 62 million deaths, 96% of these deaths occurring in low- and lower middle-income countries.
Recent data have shown that countries in which seasonal influenza vaccination programs were present before the 2009 influenza pandemic were better able to import, and use vaccines faster than countries without such programs.
Yet, fewer than 20% of the world’s LMICs have a national influenza vaccination program, while just 6% of influenza vaccine doses produced annually are distributed to 50% of the world’s population. These data illustrate the magnitude of the challenge we face in building seasonal and pandemic vaccine capacity that serves all people in all regions of the world equitably.
Currently, influenza program infrastructure supports the efforts to fight COVID-19 and is being utilized in vaccine delivery and distribution systems. A sustained seasonal influenza program is an annual opportunity to test and strengthen countries’ vaccine delivery readiness, keeping countries prepared, and enhancing global health security. Now is the time to harness the power of influenza vaccination readiness to prepare for the future.
 Murray, C.J., Lopez, A.D., Chin, B., Feehan, D., Hill, K.H., 2006. Estimation of potential global pandemic influenza mortality on the basis of vital registry data from the 1918-20 pandemic: a quantitative analysis. Lancet 368 (9554), 2211–2218.
 Rachael Porter, Shoshanna Goldin, Kathryn La Fond, Lisa Hedman, Mellissa Ungkuldee, Jordan Kurzum, Eduardo Azziz-Baumgartner, Claudia Nannei, Joseph Bresee, Ann Moen. 2020. Does having a seasonal influenza program facilitate pandemic preparedness? An analysis of vaccine deployment during the 2009 pandemic. Vaccine 38. 1152-1159. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31839465
 National routine adult immunization programmes among WHO member states; an assessment of health systems to deploy COVID-19 vaccines. S. Williams et al., Euro Surveillance 2021; 26 (17) 1-11
 Vaccine complacency and dose distribution inequities limit the benefits of seasonal influenza vaccination, despite a positive trend in use. A Palache et al., Vaccine 39 (41) 2021, 6081-7.