Health

Kenya Formally Joins International Vaccine Institute as a Member State

Kenya has successfully joined the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) as a Member State and President William Ruto said it will help Kenyans achieve self-reliance on vaccine production.

This happened on the sidelines of the just-concluded Korea-Africa Summit in Seoul where the ceremony was held to mark the country’s ratification of the IVI treaty at the agency’s headquarters in Seoul, South Korea.

During the ceremony, President Ruto raised the Kenyan flag and then the National Anthem was played.

What IVI Deal Means for kenya

What it means is that there will be an increased vaccine availability to enhance the delivery of Kenya’s primary healthcare.

President Ruto said Kenya had learned critical lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic challenges of accessing vaccines and must reduce its reliance on external manufacturers for vaccines.

“The time has come for Africa to actualise health sovereignty by liberating itself from dependency on unsustainable frameworks, and accelerating initiatives to become self-sufficient in vaccine production,” he said.

IVI already announced it would establish an office in Nairobi in a bid to also ramp up support for the country’s Universal Health Coverage agenda and promote African self-reliance in vaccine production.

“Under this partnership, we will strive to strengthen our health systems by ensuring commodity security through research, development and manufacturing.”

In 2022, Moderna said it would set up a manufacturing facility in Kenya, its first in Africa, to produce messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines, including COVID-19 shots.

Moderna said it expects to invest about $500 million in the Kenyan facility and supply as many as 500 million doses of mRNA vaccines to the continent each year.

Research and Training

The Tripartite agreement between the IVI, Kenya Advanced Institute of Science and Technology and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology will further boost the continent’s plan for cutting-edge research and training, and consequently a resilient healthcare system.

Also Read: Kenya Secures $485 Million from South Korea for Konza Digital Media City

The African Union (AU) has played a major role thus far, in taking steps to champion the continent’s healthcare infrastructure, human capital, and institutional frameworks.

IVI Director-General Jerome Kim said the agency will work with Kenya to build a strong and sustainable vaccine ecosystem that advances science, prevents disease and saves lives.

“As we think about vaccine security, it must be intentional, empowering and inclusive,” he stated.

Present at the ceremony was also Kenya’s Health Cabinet Secretary Susan Nakhumicha who said preventing diseases through primary healthcare is a critical pillar of Kenya’s Universal Health Coverage.

“It has been shown that the surest way to prevent diseases is through immunisation, and we can only achieve that if we invest in vaccines,” she said.

Kenya Formally Joins International Vaccine Institute (IVI) as a Member State
International Vaccine Institute IVI Headquarters in Seoul South Korea

 

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Lawrence Baraza

Lawrence Baraza is a dynamic journalist currently overseeing content at Metropol TV Digital. With a keen focus on business news and analytics, Lawrence guides the platform in delivering insightful, data-driven content that empowers its audience to make informed decisions. Lawrence’s commitment to quality and his ability to anticipate market trends make him a key figure in the digital media landscape. His work continues to shape the way business news is consumed, making a significant impact in the field.

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