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Can vaccines help to eradicate or eliminate certain diseases?

This Audio Job Aid takes place in a community meeting. Marie, a frontline worker, is heard working with a respected community elder named John to promote vaccination. While the community members have many questions about the importance of vaccination, John is able to help them understand better through his unique perspective from living through the time before there were so many vaccines.

Key Messages in AJA 7:

  • Vaccines have brought seven major human diseases under some degree of control - smallpox, diphtheria, tetanus, yellow fever, whooping cough, polio, and measles.
  • Eradication of diseases would be ideal but is challenging: eradication requires high levels of population immunity in all regions of the world over a prolonged period, complemented by adequate surveillance.
  • So far only one disease, smallpox, has been eradicated by vaccines, and this saves millions of lives and substantial resources each year.
  • For diseases with an environmental reservoir, such as tetanus, or with animal reservoirs, such as rabies, eradication may not be possible.
7. vaccines help to eradicate or eliminate certain diseases?