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Zambia is among countries selected for a five-year initiative to ensure that children under five years have access to the routine vaccine, a senior government official said on Monday. Minister of Health Jonas Chanda said GAVI, the vaccine alliance, has selected Zambia to be part of the new initiative dubbed “the Zero-Dose Child” to reach close to 10 million children in low-income countries who have not accessed any basic vaccine.

He said the five-year strategy was expected to commence next year and thanked GAVI for its exemplary support in ensuring all children under five years of age have access to routine vaccines. “GAVI, the vaccine alliance, will support Zambia with vaccines, cold-chain, and technical support. We remain grateful to GAVI and indeed all other partners who remain supportive to the health sector and indeed other aspects of Zambia’s wellbeing,” he said in a release.

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