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The event took place within the framework of the educational project «We and Media». Participants of the round table discussed ways of fighting dangerous infectious diseases and the role of the media in the popularization of the vaccine prophylaxis.
Well-known experts gave their opinions on the matter, among them professor Susanna Harit, Head of the Infectious Disease Prevention Department of the Children’s Scientific and Clinical Center for Infectious Diseases (FMBA of Russia) and Maria Borzova, expert in the regulation of the pharmaceutical industry, advisor to the TRUBOR law firm, as well as journalists from business, socio-political and specialized media.
Anton Muraviev, head of the Department of Communication of Interros Group, said in his welcome speech: «Despite the fact that we often talk about vaccine prophylaxis, such discussions will never be superfluous. We welcome an open dialogue with the media. This format helps to build effective communications, to discuss the most exciting and sensitive issues, to get the first-hand information form the leading experts in medicine and public health».
Only in the twentieth century, vaccination granted mankind with 25 additional years of life. According to the World Health Organization, vaccine prophylaxis is one of the most effective and economically viable measures. Every year, it prevents approximately 2–3 million deaths in all age groups in the world.
Licensed vaccines are currently available for more than twenty different most dangerous to humans infections. Thanks to vaccine prophylaxis, a number of infections were eradicated, and some of them became manageable. Plague, smallpox, cholera, diphtheria, tetanus, poliomyelitis virtually disappeared.
However, if the number of vaccinated people decreases, dangerous diseases return quickly, bringing death and disability. For example, mortality among those who were infected by tetanus and were not vaccinated against it, reaches 90%, in case of pertussis it’s 4%, measles — 5%, disability from unvaccinated poliomyelitis is 100%.
Susanna Harit says: «Vaccine prophylaxis today means the prevention of infections, the fight against antibiotic resistance, the immunomodulation, the prevention of somatic and oncological diseases».
The massive use of influenza vaccines has made it possible to take under control annual epidemics. According to WHO experts, the annual vaccination of risk groups can reduce the incidence of influenza by 60% among the population. The effectiveness of vaccine prophylaxis of influenza in Russia is confirmed by statistics: in 1996–2011 vaccination coverage increased from 0.2% to 26.5%, which reduced the incidence of influenza by 155 times and made vaccine prophylaxis one of the national priorities.
In 2018, NPO Petrovax Pharm company will register in Russia the first domestic quadrivalent vaccine for influenza prevention. Only six countries in the world produce such vaccines: Australia, USA, Canada, New Zealand, Germany and France. According to experts, the Russian influenza quadrivalent vaccine has not only the highest possible efficiency and safety profile to date, but also undeniable pharmacoeconomic benefits. Its use will prevent up to 265,800 cases during the influenza season and save more than 2.5 billion rubles in state budget, compared with traditional trivalent vaccines.
Maria Borzova notes: «Today many developed countries apply a similar approach in order to provide a comprehensive information about vaccines top the population. In the US, the so-called VIS (vaccine newsletter) is used. In Germany, doctors use leaflets (Aufklärungsmerkblätter), and parents are consulted on vaccination (Impfberatung). In Australia, special educational programs on vaccination were put in place. In France and the United States, vaccination is even a condition for admission to educational institutions. In Australia vaccination is necessary to obtain some types of social benefits, and in some territories vaccination is obligatory for enrollment in pre-school educational institutions».