EFN Invited to a WHO High-Level Event on Vaccination

EFN Invited to a WHO High-Level Event on Vaccination

Posted on April 25, 2019

Vaccination is high on the international agenda. New outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles, are occurring across Europe. Despite the demonstrated benefits of many kinds of vaccination, it remains a controversial issue largely due to misinformation, restricted access, health illiteracy and cost. The consequences of low uptakes of certain kinds of vaccination can be damaging to the health and economic welfare of vulnerable citizens across Europe, and by extension to their families and wider communities. Nurses are the frontline staff largely engaged for delivering safe and effective vaccination programmes to communities across Europe, yet rarely get formal recognition for this life-saving endeavour. The EFN report on Vaccination, bringing the evidence of frontline initiatives together, should inspire policymakers and politician to develop in co-design fit-for-purpose policies.

To reflect on this, and on occasion of the European Immunization week (24-30 April), the European Region of the World Health Organisation has organised a high-level event to which the EFN has been invited. Some of the speakers of the event are Mr Tom Auwers (Federal Ministry of Public Health, Belgium), Mr Robb Butler (UNICEF), Dr Natasha Azzopardi-Muscat (European Public Health Association), Prof Helen Bedford (UCL), Prof Pierre Van Damme (Vaccine & Infectious Disease Institute), and Dr Maggie De Block (Federal Minister of Social Affairs and Public Health and of Asylum and Migration, Belgium).

The EFN is also in line with the objectives of the Council of the EU Recommendations on strengthened cooperation against vaccine-preventable diseases, adopted on 7 December 2018, this new Coalition is aiming “to bring together European associations of healthcare workers as well as relevant students´ associations in the field, to commit to delivering accurate information to the public, combating myths and exchanging best practice”.