Another barrier to immunization is gender inequities. Women are more burdened by ill children and family members, more at risk of illness and infection, and experience poorer health and well-being over their lifespan. When women do not receive their vaccines, the negative health impacts are greater, can impede access to education and hinder ability to break out of cycles of poverty.
Key facts on immunization
Vaccines against measles, tetanus, whooping cough, diphtheria, and polio have saved more lives each year than world peace would have saved in the twentieth century.
- The HPV vaccine is the first cancer vaccine - it protects against around 90% of cervical cancers, and also provides protection against most of the genital cancers in men caused by HPV infection.
- Polio is on its way to being the second disease eradicated in history by vaccines (the first was smallpox). It remains endemic in only two countries: Afghanistan and Pakistan.
- Not all vaccines are given as shots. Some vaccines are given orally such as the live vaccination for typhoid.
- In Gavi-supported countries during the period from 2011-2020, for every US$1 spent on immunization, US$18 are saved in healthcare costs, lost wages, and lost productivity due to illness.