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Vaccines, Immunization and Biologicals

This page is no longer updated.
It was archived on 8 July 2008 and is kept for historical purposes only. The latest content is available at http://www.who.int/selection_medicines/en/

About us

Teams in the Department of Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals

IVB comprises seven teams, three of which are under the Initiative on Vaccine Research (IVR). 

Each team has a mission statement and work plans with identified products and targets which contribute to the overall objectives of the Department.


Quality Assurance and Safety of Biologicals (QSB)


To ensure the quality and safety of vaccines and other biological medicines through the development and establishment of global norms and standards.

Main products/targets

  • International (physical standards for vaccines and other biologicals (cytokines, hormones, biotechnology products)
  • Guidelines on production and quality control
  • International consensus on safety and quality issues
  • Technical advice to national regulatory authorities and national control laboratories
  • Methods, requirements, provision of international standards and reference preparations and advice
    on how to use them



Vaccine Assessment and Monitoring (VAM)


To assess the strategies and activities for reducing morbidity and mortality of vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs).

Main products/targets

  • Essential data for assessing and monitoring VPDs
  • Consolidated, analyzed and globally disseminated information on VPDs
  • Materials and methods for the assessment and monitoring of VPDs
  • Technical assistance to regional offices and countries, as requested
  • Coordination, consensus and planning related to monitoring and assessment of VPDs



Access to Technologies (ATT)


To reduce financial and technical barriers to the introduction of new and existing vaccines and immunization-related technologies.

Main products/targets

  • Coordinating global demand and capacity
  • Ensuring availability of appropriate supply sources, whether from local production, direct procurement or agency procurement
  • Developing and promoting potential financing mechanisms
  • Providing support for technology transfer
  • Ensuring capacity to oversee and regulate these products by strengthening national regulatory authorities (including Global Training Network) and national supervision



Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI)


Development of policies and strategies for maximizing the use of vaccines of public health importance and their delivery.  Supporting regions and countries in acquiring the necessary skills, competence and infrastructure to implement these policies and strategies and achieve disease control/elimination and eradication objectives.

Main products/targets

  • International/interagency consensus on strategies for the use of vaccines and immunization-related tools
  • Assisting countries to achieve and maintain a minimum standard in the delivery of national immunization services
  • Assisting regions and countries in the selection and implementation of appropriate strategies and priority activities for vaccine-preventable disease control/elimination and eradication initiative


For comments or enquiries please contact us at vaccines@who.int

Updated October 2003

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