Thursday, December 10, 2009


Award ceremony held at GAVI Partners’ Forum in HANOI, 19 November 2009 – Fifteen health ministers from low-income countries today received awards from the GAVI Alliance for their outstanding performance in improving child health and immunisation.
At a ceremony at the GAVI Alliance Partners’ Forum in Hanoi, GAVI Board Chair Mary Robinson, GAVI Immunize Every Child Board member, La Infanta Cristina of Spain, and GAVI CEO Julian Lob-Levyt presented the ministers with an engraved plaque to recognise their success. UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Yvonne Chaka Chaka, a South-African singer, moderated the event.
GAVI’s CEO Julian Lob-Levyt noted that the awards recognise the work of all those responsible for the success of the nations honoured in Hanoi, including the individuals who work in national health care systems and the GAVI partners who collaborate with the governments to help overcome financial and logistical barriers.
All have worked hard to make these achievements possible,” he said at the celebration. “With these awards we acknowledge the great work that so many of you are doing--at times in extremely challenging circumstances—to provide immunisation services to mothers and children.”
Among the awards were those given to countries for highest co-financing of vaccines and for best performance in routine immunisation. Some were also recognised for successfully:

• increasing immunisation rates under challenging conditions,
• engaging with civil society organisations,
• introducing new vaccines, and
• managing vaccine stocks.

Vietnam, the host country of the GAVI Partners’ Forum, and Nepal received awards for the highest average annual rate of reduction of child mortality among all of the 72 GAVI countries since 1990.
“We recognise that effective and sustainable programmes require careful attention to a variety of factors,” Dr Lob-Levyt said. “You have to ensure that the vaccines are available; that stocks are well managed, and your staff is well trained. You also need to put in place a workable delivery system for reaching every child, and you must have adequate resources to sustain the introduction of new vaccines. This is why we gave awards in different categories.”
The 2009 GAVI Partners’ Forum from 18 to 20 November is a platform to exchange ideas about existing opportunities and about GAVI’s policies and strategy for the next five years through 2015. The meeting gathers more than 400 participants, among them global health leaders and a wide range of international delegates from GAVI-eligible countries and from donor countries, representatives of civil society organisations, technical experts and private sector partners. The aim is to learn about developing countries’ experiences in fighting vaccine-preventable disease and discuss challenges ahead.
The meeting in Hanoi takes place just one month after the release of the 2009 State of the World’s Vaccines and Immunization by the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank ( These GAVI partners reported that worldwide immunisation rates are now at their highest ever. At the same time, the report acknowledged the need for donor nations to address a funding gap that leaves millions of children still at risk, particularly in the poorest nations and communities, where preventable diseases take their deadliest toll.

GAVI Awards

Category Countries No. Of awards
Child Survival award Vietnam
Nepal 2
Best Immunisation performance Medium coverage – Congo, Djibouti
High coverage – Gambia
Very High coverage – Bhutan, Eritrea
Large country - Bangladesh 6
Introduction of new vaccines Malawi
Cambodia 2
Vaccine stock management Afghanistan
Sudan 3
Challenge award Congo
Liberia 2
Co-financing award Guyana 1
CSO engagement Togo 1

The GAVI Alliance is a Geneva-based public-private partnership aimed at improving health in the world’s poorest countries. The Alliance brings together developing country and donor governments, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank, the vaccine industry in both industrialised and developing countries, research and technical agencies, NGOs, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and other private philanthropists.
GAVI support consists of providing life-saving vaccines and strengthening health systems. Since 2000, 256 million children have been vaccinated and close to 4 million premature deaths averted thanks to GAVI-funded programmes.
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Media contacts:

Jeffrey Rowland
in Hanoi
Mobile: +41 79 240 4559
Local: +84 1222337698
Dan Thomas
in Hanoi
Mobile: +41 79 250 2398
Local: +84 1265255950
Photo and video requests:
Dan Thomas in Hanoi
Mobile: +41 79 250 2398
Local: +84 1265255950

Sandra Scolari in Geneva
Office: +41 22 909 6528

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