vaccines Neil Thomas/Getty Images

Impfschutz für Afrika

BOSTON – Im Februar unterzeichneten afrikanische Gesundheitsminister in Addis Abeba eine weithin gefeierte Erklärung, in der sie versprachen, das Thema Impfungen weiterhin an die Spitze ihrer Bemühungen zu stellen, die Kinder des Kontinents vor Krankheit und Tod zu schützen. Diesem Versprechen nachzukommen, wird keine leichte Aufgabe werden. Impfungen sind nicht nur eine Frage der Gesundheit, sondern stellen auch eine wirtschaftliche Herausforderung dar.

Es besteht ein starkes Argument für Impfungen. Sie verhindern weltweit geschätzte 2-3 Millionen Todesfälle bei Kindern und 600.000 bei Erwachsenen. Darüber hinaus gelten Immunisierungen als eine der kostenwirksamsten Interventionen im Bereich der öffentlichen Gesundheit, wenn es darum geht, Behinderungen, Erkrankungen und Todesfälle bei Kindern zu senken. In einer jüngst veröffentlichten Studie wird geschätzt, dass jeder für Immunisierungen ausgegebene Dollar zu einer Kostenersparnis von 16 Dollar durch Vermeidung der Krankheiten führt. Unter Berücksichtigung des Wertes, den man einem längeren und gesünderen Leben beimisst, liegen die Netto-Erträge der Investitionen in Impfungen etwa 44 Mal höher als die entsprechenden Kosten. Und die Netto-Erträge übertreffen die Kosten aller Impfstoffe. 

Es wurden bereits bedeutende Fortschritte erzielt. Im Jahr 2014 wurden 84 Prozent der Kinder gegen Diphterie, Tetanus und Keuchhusten geimpft. Im Jahr 1974 lag der entsprechende Wert bei unter 5 Prozent. Ebenso außergewöhnliche Fortschritte verzeichnete man hinsichtlich der Anzahl und Arten verfügbarer Impfstoffe.  

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