New modelling research published in The Lancet revealed that vaccinations against 10 major pathogens, including measles and Japanese encephalitis, averted deaths to the tunes of 37 million in low and middle-income countries including India.
The study also estimated that from 2000 to 2019, vaccinations have prevented 37 million deaths and that this figure will increase to 69 million deaths for the period of 2000-2030. It was also found that this was most notable among children younger than the age of five.
“Most of this impact is concentrated in a reduction in mortality among children younger than 5 years (57% reduction [52–66]), most notably from measles,” said the study published on Friday.
As per a report by The Indian Express, the Lancet study involved 16 independent research groups modelling the impact of childhood vaccination programmes in 98 LMICs and assessed the impact of vaccination programmes against 10 pathogens namely hepatitis B (HepB), Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib), human papillomavirus (HPV), Japanese encephalitis (JE), measles, neisseria meningitidis serogroup A (MenA), streptococcus pneumonia, rotavirus, the rubella virus and yellow fever virus (YF).
According to the study, as a result of the vaccination programmes, those born in 2019 will experience 72 per cent lower mortality from the 10 diseases over their lifetime if there was no immunisation.
A report by The Print while quoting the Lancet study said that vaccines against measles, Hib, and S pneumonia have the largest relative impact on mortality of children younger than five years, while vaccines against HPV, Hepatitis B, and yellow fever have the largest impact per person vaccinated by year of birth.
It also predicted that “increasing HPV coverage in girls will avert more deaths per person vaccinated than any other immunisation activity, whereas increasing PCV (pneumococcal conjugate vaccines) coverage will give the largest reductions in mortality among children younger than 5 years”.
In a conclusive statement, the study revealed that vaccination will prevent 120 million deaths, of which 65 million are in children younger than five years. 58 million deaths would be prevented by measles vaccines and 38 million by hepatitis B vaccines.