World Fit For Children Goal: Ensure full immunization of children under one year of age at 90 per cent nationally, with at least 80 per cent coverage in every district or equivalent administrative unit.
DPT comprises a series of immunizations to prevent diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus. To be fully immunized, children must receive three doses of the vaccine before their first birthday. Complete coverage with DPT (DPT3) is a particularly valuable indicator of countries' performance of routine immunization and is often considered the best indicator of access to basic services, including health services.
Coverage for DPT3 increased to 81 per cent worldwide, but the number of developing countries estimated to have met the target of 80 per cent DPT3 coverage in every district has remained unchanged from 2004 to 2006 at 44.
Absolute numbers of unvaccinated infants are highest in the most populous developing countries, some of which enjoy fairly high rates of immunization coverage.