The Pampers UNICEF 1 pack = 1 vaccine global campaign, which saw the likes of Hollywood actress Salma Hayek and South Africa's Basetsana Kumalo climb onboard, has raised more than 100 million neo-natal and maternal tetanus vaccines.
The silent killer, as it has become known, attacks the nervous system, which eventually results in the infant being unable to take in its mother's milk due to paralysis of first its mouth, neck, back and then stomach. While easily preventable, research reveals that approximately every three minutes a baby dies from the disease. This is of particular concern as a vaccine against neonatal and maternal tetanus has been available for over 80 years.
Titled Participate, Vaccinate, Eliminate: Together Against Maternal and Newborn Tetanus, the research highlighted how neonatal and maternal tetanus can be eliminated by 2012 through the 1 pack = 1 vaccine Pampers UNICEF campaign.
250 million vaccines needed
It is expected that the 250 million vaccines, which will be raised over the next three years as a result of the global campaign, will help UNICEF eliminate neonatal and maternal tetanus in the remaining 47 countries affected by the disease, of which 17 of the recipient countries are in Africa.
"We have been overwhelmed by the response to this campaign, both locally and globally," Nadi Albino, Officer in Charge of UNICEF South Africa said. "It is only by working in partnership that we can begin to hope to meet some of the healthcare challenges facing the world today."
Helping SA fight HIV
"Millions of babies die from this easily preventable disease. We encourage all parents to continue their support of this exciting campaign - for every specially marked Pampers pack that you buy, you will be helping to save one life," Andy Peterson, GM of Procter & Gamble, the manufacturer of Pampers, said.
The South African component of the campaign is well on track - to date more than two million specially marked Pampers UNICEF packs have been sold. Whilst in South Africa tetanus vaccines are readily available, there are other life-threatening diseases, which UNICEF South Africa is campaigning for locally. In recognition of this, a portion of the total funds raised from the local Pampers UNICEF partnership will go to UNICEF South Africa to help vulnerable communities in their fight against HIV and malnutrition related illnesses.
The local 1 Pack = 1 Vaccine campaign, which was launched in November 2008, will run until March 2009, it aims to raise more than three million vaccines locally. By buying a specially marked Pampers pack, you will be helping to save the life of one child.
SOURCE: The Procter & Gamble Company