Overcoming Gender-Related Barriers to Immunization Services
As health care providers worldwide intensify efforts to reach zero-dose children with routine immunizations and, at the same time, scale up adult access to new Covid-19 vaccines, it has become clear that addressing gender-related barriers to immunization services must be part of any outreach. Gendered expectations regarding men’s and women’s roles within the family, the community, and the health care setting influence who receives vaccines, where and when they receive them, and from whom. If a mother is responsible for her children’s healthcare, but the children’s father controls access to the resources needed to get to the clinic, for example, the children may not receive needed vaccines in a timely manner. Similarly, if it is customary for women to visit female health workers, but the only people trained to deliver certain vaccines for adults are men, then women may not be able to access those vaccines. Indeed, recent surveys suggest that in some low and lower-middle income countries, women are accessing Covid-19 vaccines at a far slower rate than men, leaving them more vulnerable to infection. What approaches are most effective in overcoming gender-related barriers to vaccine access and uptake? What lessons can be drawn from other health areas that have addressed gender-related barriers to service utilization? And what can be done to craft gender-transformative immunization policies to ensure that no one is left behind?
Please join the CSIS Global Health Policy Center on Tuesday, March 8th from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. ET for a virtual conversation with Wendy Abbey, Technical Officer at JSI; Roopa Dhatt, Executive Director at Women in Global Health; Aboubacar Kampo, Director of Health Programmes at UNICEF; and Ellyn Ogden, Worldwide Polio Eradication Coordinator at USAID. Katherine E. Bliss, Senior Fellow and Director of Immunizations and Health Systems Resilience at the CSIS Global Health Policy Center, will moderate the discussion.
This event is made possible by the generous support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.