Vaccination is most often studied from a scientific, clinical, or epidemiological perspective, and rightly so, for vaccines are meant to improve health outcomes. But these are not the only lenses through which the effects of vaccination programs can be understood. This article provides a perspective on vaccination programs, detailing in particular a new line of inquiry that makes a case for the importance of vaccination to achieving national economic aims especially during this pandemic that is unprecedented.

Research has shown that national spending on childhood vaccination programs does more than just reduce morbidity and mortality in a country: it also promotes national economic growth and poverty reduction. We can begin with a global look that demonstrates powerful evidences that run from population health to economic well-being. Second, it discusses how knowledge of the economic benefits of health fundamentally transforms how we understand the value of vaccination. And third, it provides evidence for the scale of the returns that countries receive when they invest in immunization programs – returns that have not been fully captured by traditional economic analyses including the decrease in hospitalization cost.

Apart from that global look 2020 is different: we’ve seen clearly with COVID-19 how infectious diseases can threaten human life and well-being, sometimes in unpredictable ways and at a global scale.

Sanofi Pasteur is working hard against coronavirus by pursuing treatments and vaccines as part of our ongoing commitments to public health.  Vaccines are complex to create and deliver without ever compromising on quality and safety (vaccinating healthy people), so while we are doing everything we can to develop a new covid vaccine, we are in parallel delivering on innovative vaccines for other infectious diseases such as influenza, meningitis, yellow fever, polio and other childhood infections that once caused fear and suffering, but are now prevented or controlled.

In addition we have secured a breakthrough FDA approval for our new meningitis vaccine a few days ago.

Further, many of these models predict likely arrivals of subsequent epidemic waves until vaccines or effective treatments become available. As a leading coalition of medical experts stated in the Lancet recently, “The development of COVID-19 vaccines that can be used globally is therefore a priority for ending the pandemic.” During this year’s World Immunization Week, there’s no better time to reflect on the value of vaccines then at this unique juncture in human history. Vaccines are a critical tool not just in fighting COVID-19, but also in maintaining and protecting health over time, an essential value we can never afford to forget.

Currently, the world is grappling with an unprecedented pandemic. People across the globe fear the impact on the health of individuals and communities, and the global economy is taking a significant hit. Sanofi has a legacy of scientific discovery and experience with vaccine development, licensure, and manufacturing to respond to emerging public health threats such as COVID-19.

In response to that, Sanofi established a collaboration with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), to unlock a fast path toward developing a vaccine. Furthermore, we established a second collaboration with  Translate Bio to develop novel mRNA vaccine candidate against COVID-19.

Worth mentioning that The Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization was established by the Director-General of the World Health Organization in 1999 to provide guidance on the work of WHO. SAGE is the principal advisory group to WHO for vaccines and immunization. It is charged with advising WHO on overall global policies and strategies, ranging from vaccines and technology, research and development, to delivery of immunization and its linkages with other health interventions. SAGE is concerned not just with childhood vaccines and immunization, but all vaccine-preventable diseases. SAGE have always pushed for increasing global coverage of vaccinations and have used the WIW to enforce this message.

In brief as Sanofi Pasteur Pastuer we are very focused externally and internally on 2 main messages during this pandemic :

  • External focus: Our hearts are with the health care professionals treating patients in sometimes extremely difficult conditions as well as clinicians and researchers, and health authorities.  
  •  Internal focus: We’re proud of own people, the thousands working remotely and those in the labs, clinical work and on our manufacturing sites, continuing to assure business continuity and sustainable and essential supply of vaccines.  

I am very proud that Sanofi Pasteur provides more than 1 billion doses of vaccine each year, making it possible to immunize more than 500 million people across the globe. Last but not least, I always would like to summarize in one statement: No one should die or suffer from a preventable disease.