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Fifth GAVI Board Meeting, 21-22 June 2001, London, England

June 2001

Injection Safety and the Vaccine Fund


Improving the safety of immunization programs is critical to the mission of GAVI; in relation to other elements of immunization programs, safety deserves special focus.

A long-term communication effort, led by WHO, UNICEF and the GAVI Advocacy Task Force (ATF), will be necessary to increase awareness of the severity of the problem of unsafe practices and advocate for behavior change both among health providers and recipients.

The Task Force for Country Coordination should work on new tools to monitor safety; as it develops guidelines for the preparation of annual reports and midterm reviews, safety should be highlighted with special emphasis.

Appropriate disposal of medical waste is an important element of efforts to improve the safety of national immunization programs and should be based on the principle that the "polluter pays". Further research is necessary to develop environmentally sound, reasonably priced methods for disposing of medical wastes.


The Board:

  • agreed that funds for AD syringes should be awarded based on a review of the injection safety plan component of the country application to GAVI; countries that have already been approved will be assessed retroactively;

  • requested that the Working Group communicate this new policy to eligible countries and that the ATF consider efforts to gain wider attention for GAVI’s commitment to safety.


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