European Immunization Week 2016 celebrates progress in controlling vaccine-preventable disease

In April each year, stakeholders across the European Region and the world join forces to highlight the importance of vaccination: the most effective method of preventing infectious diseases. Established in 2005, European Immunization Week (EIW) is celebrated annually to raise awareness and help maintain momentum in the fight against vaccine-preventable diseases.

Preparations are now underway for EIW 2016, to be celebrated on 24–30 April 2016.

Global theme: Close the immunization gap

Thanks to their strong immunization programmes, the WHO's 53 European Member States are closer than ever to achieving the Region-wide elimination of measles and rubella. They have made tremendous progress towards this goal, but greater awareness and commitment are needed to close the remaining gaps in immunization and prevent future outbreaks of disease.

In line with the global theme, "Close the immunization gap", EIW 2016 will be used to increase knowledge about the status of measles and rubella in the European Region and the further action needed in all countries to ensure equitable protection from these diseases for everyone.

World Immunization Week

EIW is part of World Immunization Week. The 2016  global campaign stresses the need for immunization throughout the life-course and seeks to draw the world's attention to the critical importance of reaching vulnerable people living in conflict situations or in the wake of emergencies.