Respiratory Virus Prevention & Pandemic Preparedness

Throughout the world, there is a constant global threat of respiratory virus epidemics and pandemics. The question is not if, but when the next pandemic will occur – and how devastating it will be. The Task Force supports Pandemic Preparedness by helping countries develop stable vaccine delivery systems for all ages, such as influenza and COVID-19, which provide countries with the experience and infrastructure necessary for effective and efficient response during a pandemic. Stable vaccine programs strengthen global security, as countries establish and regularly test the vaccine systems that save lives today – and tomorrow.

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The COVID-19 vaccine was developed in record time, and the roll-out was the fastest in history – allowing for the protection of millions of people. However, the roll-out also laid bare the weaknesses within the global vaccine delivery systems. Despite advances in the areas of vaccine development, populations around the world remain vulnerable to pandemics and other infectious disease epidemics because of weak and inconsistent vaccine delivery systems, greater population density, more interaction with wild and domestic animals, and more global travel than ever before.

The Task Force for Global Health is committed to helping countries protect their populations from seasonal influenza, COVID-19 and other respiratory threats, while preparing them to respond to the next pandemic.

Respiratory Virus Prevention and Preparedness

To ensure access to effective vaccine programs, The Task Force for Global Health brought its respiratory virus programs together under one umbrella known as the Respiratory Virus Prevention and Preparedness Programs (RVPP). 

These programs include: the Partnership for International Vaccine Initiatives (PIVI)COVID-19 Vaccination Implementation Program (CoVIP), Strengthening Outbreak Notification and Response (SONAR), and the Global Funders Consortium for Universal Influenza Vaccine Development.

Vaccination programs for pandemic response and annual disease prevention are critical in ensuring overall pandemic readiness and health system strengthening. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become even more critical to improve vaccine access and sustain vaccination programs for adults and healthcare workers.

The Task Force’s Respiratory Virus Prevention and Preparedness Programs ensure pandemic preparedness at three levels – the community level, the national level, and the global level. The overlap and intersection of these are key when it comes to countries implementing self-sustaining and stable vaccine programs.

The Programs work together to ensure that all countries have the tools, knowledge, and commitment necessary to implement and maintain vaccine programs. Our collection of programs and initiatives help create an amplified impact on global vaccination systems while providing tailored technical assistance to countries around the world. Our expertise allows for improved collaboration with external stakeholders on new and future vaccines, vaccine availability, vaccine program implementation, and vaccine acceptance and demand.

Supporting Surveillance of Influenza Outbreaks in Central America and Central Asia

TEPHINET, a network of field epidemiology training programs based at The Task Force, supports efforts to strengthen surveillance of influenza outbreaks in Central America and Central Asia. Efforts in Central America focus on the development of local capacity to create a regional surveillance system to detect flu and related epidemics. In Central Asia, TEPHINET is supporting nine sentinel surveillance sites by training frontline health workers and supporting the development of an electronic surveillance system for influenza.


Doses of Flu Vaccine Provided to Countries by PIVI
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Countries Supported with Technical Assistance by PIVI
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Joe Bresee vertical crop 2017

Joe Bresee

Director, Respiratory Virus Prevention and Preparedness

Where We Work

To find out where we work on pandemic preparedness, click here. 

Header photo caption: Health workers get vaccinated for the flu during a seasonal influenza vaccination campaign in Mongolia.

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