"She’s been so sick since she got pneumonia"

Samaha, shown with her younger sister and their father at MSF’s hospital – Jordan

Photograph by Hussein Amri/MSF
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But children in Jordan and other countries are in danger every day because their governments can’t afford the vaccine.

Two companies, Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline, hold the global PCV vaccine monopoly. Under pressure from MSF, they dropped the price, but only for use in humanitarian emergencies. Now we want these corporations to do the same for all children in need.

Vaccination can protect children like her from pneumonia and other fatal diseases. And that matters more than any corporation's profits.

Why aren’t more children protected against deadly diseases?

At MSF’s hospital in Irbid, Jordan, near the Syrian border, a teenager named Samaha was exhausted from watching over her eleven-year-old sister. The younger girl was seriously ill

“She’s in a lot of pain,” Samaha said. “Last night she woke up and told me she wanted to give up. That’s when we brought her to the hospital.” Samaha’s sister was diagnosed with pneumonia. Pneumonia kills more children under the age of five than any other disease, and can be dangerous for older ones, too.

Dr. Anas Shorman is a pediatrician at the hospital, which cares for Syrian refugees. “We see many children with life-threatening respiratory infections,” he said. "Pneumonia is common. A vaccine called pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) can easily protect against it. Many deaths could be prevented if we could vaccinate more kids with PCV.”

Fortunately, with good care, Samaha’s sister recovered.

 

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What MSF staff are saying

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