Global Vaccine Safety

Looking for reliable information on vaccine safety? Meet the Vaccine Safety Net

Due to the success of immunization, some diseases are no longer perceived as a threat. Certain groups do not hesitate to promote and share non-substantiated, misleading and unbalanced information about vaccines. This can create distrust and fear from vaccines, disrupt immunization programs, and lead to re-emergence of well controlled diseases.

Acting out a Vaccine Safety Crisis – A unique training in Tanzania, March 2016

At request of the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, United Republic of Tanzania, WHO organized an innovative Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI) field investigation and communication simulation training in Bagamoyo, from 14 to 18 March 2016. Participants included officers from the Tanzania Food and Drugs Authority (TFDA), immunization programme (IVD), members of the national AEFI Committee, regional immunization and vaccine officers and experts from partner organizations in Tanzania.

Revised Core Variables and Reporting form for adverse events following immunization (AEFI)

To encourage countries to report AEFI with essential information, the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety (GACVS) proposed in June 2012 a set of simple and vaccine-specific minimum 22 AEFI records (core variables). An AEFI reporting form incorporating these core variables was subsequently developed and used by several member states. GACVS recently reviewed feedback received from countries and recommended the inclusion of three additional variables. This revised set of variables should enhance the quality of data collected and enable national programme managers in Member States to better monitor vaccine safety. A revised AEFI reporting form incorporating these changes has been developed by WHO.

GACVS highlight of December 2015 meeting

The Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety (GACVS) held its 33rd meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, on 2–3 December 2015. The Committee examined the clinical and population characteristics of cluster immunization anxiety-related reactions and the detection of vaccine safety signals from spontaneous reporting databases. It also reviewed vaccine-specific safety issues concerning RTS,S malaria vaccine, safety of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines, pandemic influenza vaccine and narcolepsy, and the safety profile of smallpox vaccines. GACVS findings and recommendations were published in the WHO Weekly Epidemiological Record on 22 January 2016.