• Staff report


The head of an international organization that funds vaccinations in developing countries urged the government Thursday to contribute money to the program.

The Vaccine Fund is the fundraising arm of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, launched in 2000 by groups in the public and private sectors, including the World Bank, the World Health Organization, vaccine makers and nongovernmental groups.

Fund President Jacques-Francois Martin is in Japan to attend a world conference on vaccinations, which opened Thursday and runs through Oct. 3 in Tsukuba, Ibaraki Prefecture. During his trip, he plans to meet officials from the Foreign Ministry and the government-affiliated Japan International Cooperation Agency to ask for donations to the fund.

“We aim to fully immunize 90 percent of the children in all developing countries,” Martin said. “At the time of globalization . . . it is our interest to protect ourselves from infectious diseases. This is why we believe that immunization has to be developed.”

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