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VIMC participation at the 2024 RITAG meeting, Rwanda

Vaccine Impact Modelling Consortium member, Matthew Ferrari, participated in the meeting of the Regional Immunization Technical Advisory Group (RITAG) of the African region from 11-14 June in Kigali, Rwanda. The RITAG was attended by more than 100 global immunization experts. Participants included RITAG members, National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG) members of countries in the African region, representatives of development partners and donors, immunization programme managers of countries in the African region, and WHO and NGO immunization experts in the African region.


Dr. Ferrari presented a talk in the session on measles immunization that detailed modelling work on measles and rubella elimination. He presented the work of a VIMC collaborative project that included other VIMC members, Amy Winter, Emilia Vynnycky, and Mark Jit, on the feasibility of regional measles elimination in the WHO South East Asian Region. This work was presented as a model for regional engagement of VIMC with the AFRO region. In addition, he presented recent work on the consequences of the introduction of rubella vaccination into routine programs in the 19 countries (17 in African region) that had not yet done so as of the start of 2024. This work combines subnational analyses and modeling in Nigeria with national-scale models of all 19 countries using the VIMC rubella models led by Drs. Winter and Vynnycky. Dr. Ferrari then participated in a panel discussion addressing concerns and strategies for improving measles and rubella vaccination programmes in the region.


Finally, Dr. Ferrari announced the formation of a new Measles Analytics Hub, that will be managed by VIMC and invited the participation of modelling groups from across the African region. This exciting new effort, supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will seek to both better connect measles and rubella modelling groups around the world, with a specific focus on supporting modeling groups from measles endemic countries, and to facilitate better engagement between modeling groups and programmatic groups like the RITAG.

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