Global influenza vaccine distribution survey demonstrates urgency of implementation of objective 3 of WHO influenza strategy 2019-2030.

Bram Palache, Paula Barbosa


The World Health Organization’s (WHO) Global Action Plan for influenza vaccines (GAP) and Global Influenza strategy 2019-2030 (objective 3) called for the expansion of seasonal influenza prevention. In 2008, the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) Influenza Vaccine Supply International Task Force’s (IVS) developed a methodology to track progress in the prevention of seasonal influenza. Data from 200 countries were confidentially collected and aggregated by the IFPMA Secretariat, and combined with previous IFPMA IVS survey data (2004–2015). A “hurdle” rate, defined as the number of doses per 1,000 population required to reach the proportion of the population 65 years and older, was used to assess vaccination coverage of the primary target group, the elderly. In this fifth update of the IFPMA IVS survey, we found: the number of doses distributed in 2017 were similar to the numbers distributed in 2012; the number of countries using any seasonal influenza vaccine in 2017 was similar to the number first achieved in 2008; the rate of dose distribution per 1,000 persons was similar to the rate first achieved between 2007 and 2008; and the proportion of countries achieving the hurdle rate in 2017 was the second lowest for any year in the survey. These data provide strong evidence that following initial gains in dose distribution, between 2004 and 2008, progress in the control and prevention of seasonal influenza has stagnated or regressed everywhere except in the Americas region. This survey highlights that policies and tactics to increase vaccination coverage have to date been unsuccessful outside of the Americas. It provides the WHO’s Global Influenza strategy 2019-2030 with strong evidence that the highest importance and urgency should be attached to strategic goal 3.


seasonal influenza; vaccination policy; vaccination coverage rates; pandemic preparedness; vaccine recommendations; monitoring and evaluatio

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