Thirty-ninth session


Vaccine Development and Control of Communicable Diseases by Immunization

         The Regional Committee,

         Having considered the report on vaccine development and control of communicable diseases by immunization;*

         Concerned at the high prevalence of hepatitis B virus infection in many countries and Japanese encephalitis in some countries of the Region;

         Noting that advances in biotechnology have made possible the production and use of effective and safe hepatitis B and Japanese encephalitis vaccines and the preparation of a less reactogenic acellular pertussis vaccine;

         Noting with satisfaction the schemes developed by WHO to promote self-sufficiency in hepatitis B vaccine production in some countries of the Western Pacific Region, and to collect HBsAg positive plasma in the South Pacific, process it into hepatitis B vaccine and send the vaccine back to the countries supplying the plasma;

  1. URGES Member States:
    (1) to consider including immunization against hepatitis B and Japanese encephalitis in their expanded programme on immunization if their local situation warrants it;
    (2) to endeavour to attain self- sufficiency in hepatitis B vaccine production if they have the potential for doing so;
    (3) if self-sufficiency in vaccine production is not possible, or a lower-cost vaccine of similar or greater quality, efficacy and safety is not freely available, to participate in the regional plasma collection scheme which has been initiated among countries of the South Pacific;
  2. REQUESTS the Regional Director:
    (1) to continue:
    (a) to encourage and suppor research on and the production of new, improved and more effective vaccines at lower cost;
    (b) to provide technical support to Member States desiring to attain self-sufficiency in hepatitis B vaccine production;
    (c) to promote cooperation and collaboration among Member States in the transfer of information and technology related to vaccine production;
    (2) to seek to mobilize extrabudgetary resources for the implementation of the above-mentioned activities.

* WPR/RC39/10

15 September 1988

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