The Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio (VDCOSA) coordinates vaccine development activities across San Antonio. In addition to outstanding human assets and institutions in academia, health care, military, industry, government and not-for-profit entities involved in infectious disease, the infrastructure for R&D, education and health care in San Antonio is unique.
VDCOSA programs span a wide range from basic R&D to applied and translational research with initiatives in prevention and treatment of acute and chronic infections. Bio-Defense activities include the military and its needs for dealing with infectious agents encountered by their personnel as well as potential bio-weapon threats.
The global nature of epidemics emphasizes the essential importance of international collaborations, and the Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio coordinates these efforts for the region.
Routine vaccine coverage and the introduction of new vaccines have increased enormously in the past 10 years, with 14·6 million more children receiving the routine diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis vaccine in 2009 than in 2000. Yet 23 million children younger than 1 year are still missed, particularly those living in the poorest quintile of low-income countries who have not received the primary series of childhood vaccines.
In this report, we draw from our experience of vaccine development and focus on influenza vaccines as an example to consider production, distribution, access, and other factors that affect vaccine uptake and population-level effectiveness.