Global vaccine alliance wins prestigious Spanish prize

MADRID (AP) — The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization has won Spain’s illustrious Princess of Asturias award for international cooperation.

Announcing the winner of the annual prize Thursday, the prize organizers said that the alliance has helped vaccinate more than 760 million children in the world’s poorest countries since its creation 20 years ago.

Geneva-based Gavi, as the alliance is commonly known, is believed to have prevented more than 13 million deaths.

Gavi negotiates vaccines at affordable prices for poor countries, protecting children against deadly and debilitating infectious diseases.

Its goal is to save lives, reduce poverty and help protect the world against pandemics.

Gavi’s core partners are the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. It also works with governments, nongovernmental organizations and companies.

The Princess of Asturias awards, presented annually in categories ranging from arts to sports, are among the most prestigious in the Spanish-speaking world. Recipients are awarded 50,000 euros ($56,000) at a lavish ceremony in October.