UNICEF provides Ukraine with 120,000 doses of diphtheria-tetanus vaccine

27 June 2023

KYIV, 27 June 2023 — Ukraine has received 120,000 doses of Diphtheria–Tetanus–Pertussis (DTP) vaccine from UNICEF to ensure the uninterrupted availability of vaccines for routine immunization programme.

UNICEF responded to the preemptive request of the Government of Ukraine based on the assessment of the existing stocks and the unavailability of other sources of timely vaccine delivery.

"It is crucial that the people of Ukraine have sustainable protection against preventable serious health risks, which have been exacerbated by the ongoing war and the humanitarian crisis," stated Murat Sahin, UNICEF Representative in Ukraine.

The combined DTP vaccine provides effective protection against three dangerous infections that both children and adults are susceptible to:

  • Diphtheria affects the heart, nervous system, and kidneys, resulting in death for 1 in 5 patients.
  • Tetanus may infect unvaccinated individuals through contact with dirt containing its spores if it enters cuts or wounds. It damages the nervous system and causes seizures, with a mortality rate as high as 70 per cent.
  • Pertussis bacteria, highly contagious, infect lungs causing rapid, violent, and uncontrollable coughing, leading to complete air loss from the lungs. In infants, it may result in life-threatening pauses in breathing (apnea).

The DTP vaccine for children is free of charge. As per the national immunization schedule, DTP-containing vaccine is given at the ages of 2, 4, 6, and 18 months, followed by DT (diphtheria-tetanus) vaccine at 6 years and Td (tetanus-diphtheria) vaccine at 16 years. It is recommended that adults receive revaccination with Td vaccine every ten years. All of these vaccines are free of charge.

“DPT vaccine provides children with protection against serious infectious diseases. Pertussis, diphtheria, and tetanus can have serious consequences for children's health, especially in times of war when access to healthcare may be limited. As part of the Ministry of Health's cooperation with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), we systematically provide vaccination points across the country with the necessary vaccine. That is why it is important to check your vaccination status and catch up with the routine vaccinations if needed. Timely immunization is a guarantee of health," said Ihor Kuzin, Deputy Minister, Chief State Sanitary Doctor.

Earlier in 2022–2023, UNICEF also procured and provided Ukraine with over 2.1 million doses of vaccines against polio, measles, mumps, rubella, and tuberculosis.

Note to editors:

UNICEF bolstered the cold chain for Ukraine at all levels from national and regional stores to vaccination points: 

  • UNICEF, under the COVAX initiative, purchased 26 freezers to be installed at the national and regional levels to strengthen the immunization chain.
  • Almost 5,200 vaccine refrigerators and freezers procured with the World Bank funds and under installation will support safe vaccine storage at vaccination points. 
  • UNICEF, with its own funds and USAID funds, procured 36 refrigerator vans for vaccine transportation from national to oblast and from oblast to vaccination points. 
  • Furthermore, vaccine carriers and cold boxes for vaccine storage and transportation for over 2,500 vaccination points and 800 mobile teams were distributed across Ukraine.

To support the vaccination process, UNICEF has already delivered almost 6.2 million syringes in 2023.

Media contacts

Oleksandra Burynska
Communications Specialist
UNICEF Ukraine


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org