I welcome the Government's commitment to end preventable deaths of mothers, newborns and children in the developing world by 2030, and thus satisfy progress toward Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3.
Deadly diseases like measles, polio, tetanus, tuberculosis, diphtheria and whooping cough are all easily and cheaply preventable by vaccination. I therefore welcome that the UK is an active member of the Vaccine Funder's Forum that includes the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, World Bank and all major donors.
Steps by the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), which oversees the UK's progress on SDGs, to this end, includes a commitment of up to £1.65 billion between 2021 to 2025 to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. This will support the roll-out of vaccines to the world's poorest countries, focusing on the hardest to reach children.
This will include support for delivery of quality antenatal and post-natal care, including through the Global Financing Facility in 36 countries, which is helping countries challenged by service disruptions due to the pandemic; and the promotion of a highly cost-effective set of nutrition services for women and children, including breastfeeding support, provision of nutritional supplements and treatment for acute malnutrition.
The FCDO has also published a Health Strengthening Paper and the Ending Preventable Deaths Action Plan. These form a central part of the Government's wider effort towards ending the preventable deaths of mothers, newborns and children, and strengthening global health security. Considering the lessons learnt from the response to COVID-19, HMG heeds the importance of building resilient health systems for the future.
Finally, i welcome that the event 'Protecting Children's Futures' took place on 25 April. Unfortunately, i was unable to attend this event due to prior Parliamentary commitments. However, please be assured that i recognise the importance of this issue.