Infection with dengue virus is a major public health problem in the Asia-Pacific region and throughout tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. Vaccination represents a major opportunity to control dengue and several candidate vaccines are in development. Experts in dengue and in vaccine introduction gathered for a two day meeting during which they examined the challenges inherent to the introduction of a dengue vaccine into the national immunisation programmes of countries of the Asia-Pacific. The aim was to develop a series of recommendations to reduce the delay between vaccine licensure and vaccine introduction. Major recommendations arising from the meeting included: ascertaining and publicising the full burden and cost of dengue; changing the perception of dengue in non-endemic countries to help generate global support for dengue vaccination; ensuring high quality active surveillance systems and diagnostics; and identifying sustainable sources of funding, both to support vaccine introduction and to maintain the vaccination programme. The attendees at the meeting were in agreement that with the introduction of an effective vaccine, dengue is a disease that could be controlled, and that in order to ensure a vaccine is introduced as rapidly as possible, there is a need to start preparing now.
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