A Double Vaccine Crisis is Endangering Millions of Children

By Martha Rebour and Lori Sloate on August 3, 2021

Matias Salazar, 2, waits for getting vaccinated with his mother and brother during a mass vaccination day in Caracas, Venezuela May 26, 2021. UNICEF supports the regular immunization programme and vaccination campaigns in Venezuela through vaccine procurement and technical assistance to the Expanded Programme of Immunization (EPI) for regular and supplemental immunization activities. This includes the support of the Ministry of Health’s (MoH) door-to-door immunization campaign for children and pregnant women in the Capital District and distributed of the Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B and Hemophilus Influenzae, polio (IPV and bOPV) and yellow fever vaccines to cover national needs. Furthermore, UNICEF has provided health workers PPE and has supported the MoH with transportation of equipment and staff, including to remote areas. In 2020, UNICEF procured more than 7.3 million vaccines to protect children against tuberculosis, polio, yellow fever, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (DTP), hepatitis B, Haemophilus Influenza type b, measles, mumps, and rubella. By April 2021, UNICEF has reached to over 62,7411 children aged 0 to 12 months through measles vaccines and over 47,80 children aged 0 to 12 months have been vaccinated with three doses of pentavalent vaccine (Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B and Haemophilus Influenzae vaccine).