Jan 26, 2019

A good news story from Davos

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

DAVOS, Switzerland — Joint global efforts are finding it harder to win general support at the moment, but a nearly 20-year campaign to vaccinate children around the world was described as a success story at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week.

The good news: Since its formation at the World Economic Forum in 2000, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance —a nonprofit that sells subsidized vaccines to the world's poorest countries — has helped to immunize some 700 million children against polio, cholera, measles and other diseases.

  • By Gavi's calculations, that's helped avert 10 million future deaths.
  • The number of children who die under the age of five has dropped by 58% since 1990, in part due to such immunization campaigns.

But, but, but: Roughly 1 in 10 children haven't received what are usually routine vaccinations for life-threatening diseases like diphtheria and hepatitis B.

  • Migration and growing economic inequality will leave some of the world's poorest and most vulnerable living in middle income countries — which disqualifies them for most aid. That will make it difficult to reach those children, Gavi's CEO Seth Berkley told Axios.
  • Getting to those people and introducing new vaccines, including one for typhoid in Pakistan and Zimbabwe, are the group's priorities, says Berkley.

The big picture: Gavi and other global health initiatives depend heavily on funding from the U.S. and bilateral organizations. "In a world of populism, there is nervousness about whether it will get re-funded," said Novartis CEO Vasant Narasimhan.

Go deeper: Read the full Davos Special Report

Go deeper

Situational awareness

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Catch up on today's biggest news:

  1. Warren supporters form super PAC
  2. We may be on "the brink" of coronavirus pandemic
  3. Pentagon policy chief resigns
  4. National polls show Bernie in control ahead of Nevada
  5. How a Chinese think tank rates all 50 U.S. governors
  6. Sanders and Bloomberg battle over heart health

Trump has declared war on sanctuary cities

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Armed with subpoenas, lawsuits and immigration SWAT teams, the Trump administration has declared war on sanctuary cities.

The big picture: President Trump and his administration have used every available tool to try to crack down on local governments that refuse to hold immigrants in criminal custody, block immigration agents from working in county jails or deny federal authorities access to immigrants' records.

Peter Thiel's Founders Fund isn't really Peter Thiel's Founders Fund

Illustration: Photo Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photos: Charles Eshelman, Steve Jennings, and Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Founders Fund has raised $3 billion for a pair of new funds, so expect a slew of headlines about how "Peter Thiel's venture capital firm" is now flush with cash.

Behind the scenes: Thiel is essential to Founders Fund, but he's not autocratic. Instead, Axios has learned that he's one of three people with veto power over most FF investments, and is unable to do a deal without approval of the other two.