Pentavalent vaccine makes a difference in Madagascar

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Madagascar shows benefits of health interventions with an impressive reduction of its under-five mortality rate

Madagascar - © GAVI/2011/Ed Harris

Doctor Hanintsoa Rakotoarimanga checks a mother’s immunisation record before giving the pentavalent vaccine at a health point in Isotry, a district of Madagascar’s capital, Antananarivo.

Madagascar is one of just seven countries that managed to reduce its under-five mortality rate by more than 60% over the 20-year period, 1990–2009. 

This shows that even in the most difficult of circumstances, immunisation and other basic interventions can play key roles in preventing disease and saving lives. 

According to Dr Rakotoarimanga, the pentavalent vaccine is having an impressive impact in Madagascar. “Since we started to use the pentavalent vaccine, we have seen much fewer cases of pneumonia and meningitis,” she says.

The price of the pentavalent vaccine has consistently become more affordable since 2007, when most GAVI-supported countries switched over to this five-in-one vaccine.

168 million

GAVI-supported vaccine campaigns have resulted in 100 million individuals being immunised against meningitis A and 68 million against yellow fever since 2000.

Meningitis A Conjugate Vaccine Immunizaton Campaign. Joint WHO/UNICEF 2011 Progress Report: January to December 2012. March 2013, p.3 | 2011 data. Yellow Fever Initiative. Joint WHO and UNICEF 2011 Progress Report Nov 2012, p.13, 15. 2012 data: Based on data from Epidemiology of Yellow Fever in the African Region: 2012 report. WHO Regional Office for Africa. April 2013, p.6.

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