Vaccines Europe launches first pipeline review

08 December 2022

Catherine Eckford / European Pharmaceutical Review

In its first pipeline review, Vaccines Europe has set out four key actions to ensure adults are protected from vaccine-preventable diseases.

Vaccines Europe has unveiled its first pipeline review of its 15 members companies, with 100 vaccine candidates as of July 2022. 

The review revealed a pipeline aimed at tackling current and future challenges, such as antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and respiratory tract infections, through leveraging a wide range of new technology platforms. The data indicated 46 percent of the vaccine candidates target infections that do not have an available vaccine. Furthermore, 80 percent of the vaccine candidates target the adult population, reflecting the need for a major shift to a life-course approach to vaccination. The report maintained that COVID-19 vaccines hold a strong reminder that preparation is key.

The pipeline review’s four actions to help protect adults from vaccine-preventable diseases

Vaccines Europe asserts that at present, there is a low level of investment by European Union (EU) Member States in their immunisation programmes, with a flat budget over the last 5 years, as new vaccines become available.

According to the organisation, today, a comprehensive routine immunisation programme can prevent about 20 life-threatening and debilitating infectious diseases and related cancers at every stage of life. The review found that 77 percent of the States spend less than 0.5 percent of their healthcare budget on immunisation, resulting in inequity in vaccine access across the EU, low uptake and vaccine hesitancy, especially for adolescent and adult immunisations.

The pipeline review determined there are disparities in market access to vaccines across Europe. The time to population access for vaccines exceeds six years in a third of States, and the procurement mechanism for vaccines in most States doesn’t facilitate fair competition, timely access to vaccines and sustainable supply.

Children vaccination schedules are well established across Europe but this not the same for adults, so country readiness to prioritise and implement adult immunisation efficiently must be addressed as a matter of prime importance, the report showed.

Vaccines Europe states that the actions must be addressed to ensure the European Beating Cancer Plan and the Immunization Agenda 2030 are met. The organisation claims it is crucial to account for vaccine specificities when shaping Europe’s research ecosystem, through revision of the General Pharmaceutical Legislation.

Additional actions Vaccines Europe calls for is early, open and continued dialogue, collaboration and coordination with all stakeholders to make Europe attractive to the vaccine industry and ensure there is equity in vaccination access to build resilient societies and healthcare systems.

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