WHO updates fact sheet on immunization coverage (15 July 2016)

The World Health Organization (WHO) has updated its fact sheet on immunization coverage.

Key Messages:

Immunization averts an estimated 2 to 3 million deaths every year from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), and measles.

An additional 1.5 million deaths could be avoided if global vaccination coverage improves.

Global vaccination coverage – the proportion of the world’s children who receive recommended vaccines – has remained steady for the past few years.

In 2015, an estimated 19.4 million infants worldwide were not reached with routine immunization services such as DTP3 vaccine. More than 60% of these children live in 10 countries: Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Ukraine.

Global Immunization Coverage 2015

Measles:  By the end of 2015,

  • 85% of children had received 1 dose of measles vaccine by their second birthday,
  • 160 countries had included a second dose as part of routine immunization
  • 61% of children received 2 doses of measles vaccine according to national immunization schedule.


  • Mumps vaccine had been introduced nationwide in 121 countries by the end of 2015.


  • Rubella vaccine was introduced nationwide in 147 countries by the end of 2015
  • Global coverage was estimated at 46%.


  • The vaccine to prevent maternal and neonatal tetanus had been introduced in 103 countries by the end of 2015.
  • An estimated 83% of newborns were protected through immunization.
  • Maternal and neonatal tetanus persist as public health problems in 19 countries, mainly in Africa and Asia.


  • In 2015, 86% of infants around the world received 3 doses of polio vaccine.
  • Polio has been stopped in all countries except for 2: Afghanistan and Pakistan.
  • Polio-free countries have been infected by imported virus, and all countries – especially those experiencing conflict and instability – remain at risk until polio is fully eradicated.

Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)

  • Hib vaccine had been introduced in 192 countries by the end of 2015.
  • Global coverage with 3 doses of Hib vaccine is estimated at 64%.
  • In the Americas, coverage is estimated at 90%, while it is only 25% and 56% in the Western Pacific and South-East Asia Regions respectively.

Hepatitis B

  • Hepatitis B vaccine for infants had been introduced nationwide in 184 countries by the end of 2015.
  • Global coverage with 3 doses of hepatitis B vaccine is estimated at 83% and is as high as 90% in the Western Pacific.
  • In addition, 96 countries introduced one dose of hepatitis B vaccine to newborns within the first 24 hours of life, and the global coverage is 39%.

Human papillomavirus

  • Human papillomavirus vaccine was introduced in 63 countries by the end of 2015.

Pneumococcal diseases

  • Pneumococcal vaccine had been introduced in 128 countries by the end of 2015,
  • Global coverage was estimated at 37%.


  • Rotavirus vaccine was introduced in 81 countries by the end of 2015,
  • Global coverage was estimated at 23%.

Meningitis A

  • By the end of 2015 – 5 years after its introduction – more than 235 million people in African countries affected by the disease had been vaccinated with MenAfriVac, a vaccine developed by WHO and PATH.

Yellow fever

  • Yellow fever vaccine had been introduced in routine infant immunization programmes in 35 of the 42 countries and territories at risk for yellow fever in Africa and the Americas.

Useful Links:

Link to the updated fact sheet:


Link to Global Immunization Data (PDF):


Link to the WHO news release:



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