Abbas Omaar

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Vaccine development is an often underrated part of addressing AMR. Photo via Getty Images.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR), where the ability of a drug to treat an infection is compromised, reached the highest political level last week with the convening of a UN General Assembly meeting dedicated to the threat. With estimates of 700,000 deaths occurring each year due to drug-resistant infections and the World Bank projecting that if left unchecked, the problem could cause annual global GDP to fall between 1.1% and 3.8% before 2050, all member states adopted a political declaration that outlined commitment to a broad range of interventions. The first of its kind, the declaration rightfully recognized that combating AMR demands a multi-pronged approach, including raising awareness of the threat and its solutions; more prudent use of current drugs; replenishing the pipeline of antibiotics; developing new types of drugs, rapid diagnostic tests and vaccines; closer collaboration between the agricultural and human health sectors, and sustained funding for implementing national plans.…  Seguir leyendo »

A Somali mother holding a medical card waits for her baby to be given a pentavalent vaccine injection at a medical clinic in Mogadishu. Photo by Getty

Since 2010, a revolutionary new vaccine has been introduced across several states in sub-Saharan Africa as a means of tackling deadly outbreaks of meningitis A – a longstanding threat to global health security in the region. The development of the vaccine MenAfriVac is a unique example of the triumphs that emerge from successful public-private partnerships and coordinated transfers of technology from high-income countries that have the capacity to develop such vaccines to low- and-middle income countries where manufacturing is possible at significantly reduced costs. The question now is whether a lack of willingness of governments to pay for this vaccine could keep it out of many countries where it is needed most.…  Seguir leyendo »