Dr. John Clemens, Director-General of the International Vaccine Institute (IVI), has been honored by the Guangxi Provincial Government for his contribution to the Chinese province as a foreign scientist. The IVI is a Seoul, Korea-based international organization devoted to new vaccines for developing countries.
Dr. Clemens has been awarded "the Golden Embroidered Ball Award," which is presented to foreign scientists who have made distinguished contribution to the development of science and technology in Guangxi. Dr. Clemens will attend an awarding ceremony to be held at the grand hall of the Guangxi province communist party committee on January 6.
For the past seven years, Dr. Clemens has successfully led the IVI´s vaccine research programs on enteric infections and bacterial meningitis in Guangxi. The Diseases of the Most Impoverish (DOMI) program, focusing on vaccines against enteric infections (cholera, typhoid fever and bacterial dysentery), has immunized some 90,000 people against typhoid fever in Hechi City free of charge.
The IVI closely collaborates with dozens of Chinese institutions, including the Guangxi Center for Disease Control, in conducting epidemiological studies and clinical trials of vaccines to accelerate the development and introduction of affordable new vaccines for the poor. The IVI´s other collaborators in China include the Chinese Ministry of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Beijing Friendship Hospital, and the vaccine manufacturer Sinovac.
In addition, Dr. Clemens was elected in November to the Board of the GAVI Alliance, a global public-private partnership dedicated to increasing children´s access to vaccines in poor countries. The Board includes representatives of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, The World Bank, and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The International Vaccine Institute (IVI), based in Seoul, Korea, is the world´s only international organization devoted exclusively to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the world´s poorest people, especially children in developing countries. Established at the initiative of the United Nations Development Programme, the IVI operates under a treaty signed by 38 countries and the World Health Organization, and conducts research in more than 20 countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America.