Dear HIA and CHIFA (child health)
Below are the citation and extracts from a viewpoint in Archive of Disease of Childhood, by former ICHG convenor Sunil Bhopal and Maryke Nielsen.
CITATION: Bhopal S, Nielsen M. Vaccine hesitancy in low- and middle-income countries: potential implications for the COVID-19 response.
Archives of Disease in Childhood 2021;106:113-114.
Some experts estimate that, at a minimum, 60% population level immunity will be required... Particularly in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs) with a high proportion of young people and less well-established adult vaccination programmes, widespread childhood vaccination may also be necessary. This leads us to consider the likely acceptability of a novel COVID-19 vaccination for children, who are—at this stage of the pandemic—mostly not severely affected by COVID-19...
We celebrate the scientific progress that means development of a vaccine for this novel virus is even a consideration. We can also be somewhat reassured that vaccine hesitancy in LMICs remains on the whole low. However, this lack of hesitancy is fragile and should not be taken for granted; communities and families must be incorporated into decision making to ensure that whole populations move together in solidarity. Small mistakes including safety problems as well as necessary social distancing measures may have large and unintended consequences for immunisation uptake for eventual COVID-19 vaccine and routine vaccinations. Care and caution are needed to protect our children
Best wishes, Neil
Coordinator, WHO-HIFA Collaboration: HIFA project on Essential Health Services and COVID-19
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