Ukraine received more than 700K doses of tetanus-diphtheria vaccine from UNICEF

24 October 2022

To survive and thrive from early childhood through to adolescence and beyond, children need to be healthy. This enables them to access education so  that every child in Ukraine, irrespective of background or circumstance, has an equal chance to fulfill their potential.  

To ensure children thrive and remain in good health, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) has delivered to Ukraine 700,000 doses of tetanus-diphtheria (Td) vaccine to protect children after six and adults. 

The vaccine is provided as humanitarian aid, free of charge, and will be distributed across Ukraine. Procurement became possible thanks to financial support from the Italian Government.

Diphtheria toxin affects the heart, nervous system and kidneys, causing death in 1 in 5 patients. The infection can as well produce a membrane in the throat that can obstruct breathing.

People of any age can become infected with tetanus through cuts or wounds if dirt containing tetanus spores gets into a wound. Tetanus affects the nervous system and causes seizures. Mortality can be as high as 70 per cent. The only prevention of tetanus is vaccination.

According to the Ukrainian national immunisation schedule, children are vaccinated against diphtheria and tetanus at the ages of two, four, six and 18 months, revaccinated at the age of six and 16 years. It is recommended that adults are revaccinated every 10 years. Vaccination of children and adults against diphtheria and tetanus is free of charge. 

In September 2022, UNICEF delivered to Ukraine 70,000 doses of diphtheria and tetanus DT vaccine to protect  children from six years of age. This delivery was also provided as humanitarian aid. 

Currently, Ukraine receives vaccines procured by UNICEF with donor funds from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the governments of Japan and Italy. These vaccines protect against poliomyelitis, diphtheria and tetanus, measles, rubella, mumps and rabies. In total, over 1.5 million vaccine doses are being delivered to the country as humanitarian aid.

At the end of August, UNICEF also started delivering refrigerated vans for the transportation of vaccines for all regions of Ukraine. The first 14 out of 30 vehicles were handed over to the Regional Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine. 

UNICEF, together with partners, continues to support Ukraine in responding to the emergency humanitarian situation created by the war, including by providing medicines and medical equipment, building the capacity of health care workers, repairing bomb shelters in Ukrainian hospitals, providing assistance to families with children, and conducting educational activities for children, their parents, social workers and teachers.

Media contacts

Olha Pryshko
Communications Specialist
UNICEF in Ukraine


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.

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