Misinformation and the Covid19 crisis are believed to be the cause of the largest drop in childhood vaccination.
Red alert ! Fewer and fewer children are being vaccinated against other diseases, according to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Unicef published Thursday, July 14. The reasons for this significant drop are multiple: increased misinformation, supply problems, or because of the continuity of care linked to the pandemic.
“This is a red alert for children’s health. We are witnessing the largest continuous decline in childhood immunization in a generation. […] The consequences will be measured in the number of lives,” said Catherine Russell, director general of Unicef, in a press release.
The proportion of children who received all three doses of vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus and poliomyelitis fell from 86% in 2019 to only 81% in 2021, according to information shared by Le Parisien. Used as a key indicator, this vaccine is vaccination coverage across the world. Despite ten years of improvements, a decline is indeed recorded between 2020 and 2021.
“We need to catch up on immunization for the missing millions, or we will inevitably see more epidemics, sick children and great strain on already stretched health systems,” argues Catherine Russell.
1u20e3.1u20e38u20e3.8u20e3 million children did not receive a single vaccine in 2021 – the largest u2198ufe0f in 29 years, due to:
ud83dudd38 #COVID19-related disruptions
ud83dudd38 misinformation undermining vaccine acceptance & demand
WHO & @UNICEF sound the alarm ud83dudea8
ud83cudd95 data on global vaccine coverage u2b07ufe0f
— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) July 14, 2022
A total of 25 million children therefore missed one or more doses of the vaccine in 2021. This is 2 million more than in 2020and 6 million more than in 2019. “Of those 25 million, 18 million received no dose, the majority of them in middle- and low-income countries, including India, Nigeria, Indonesia, Ethiopia and the Philippines.”reports Le Parisien.