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Vaccines are one of the greatest advances in medicine and public health. They can prevent disease, disability, complications and death. They are one of the most cost-effective interventions we have. One example is the polio vaccine which, with the current schedule, gives life-long protection.
Vaccines are necessary to control infectious diseases, and the number of vaccines and types of diseases that can be dealt with is constantly increasing. They have a component of individual protection (I protect myself) and a component of collective protection (I contribute to the protection of others).
Thanks to vaccines, diseases such as smallpox have been eradicated from earth while others, such as polio, are close to being eliminated. Currently, COVID-19 vaccines are bringing us closer to controlling this pandemic.