Healthy Start / Champion

Andrew Mitchell MP

"For the price of a cup of coffee you can vaccinate a child against five of the major childhood killers. Every day the lives of 7,000 children are saved by vaccines. Vaccinations are proof positive that well spent aid save lives. They are one of the best and most cost effective health interventions that money can buy." -Andrew Mitchell MP

Andrew Mitchell MP is Member of Parliament for Sutton Coldfield and was appointed Secretary of State for International Development on 12 May 2010. Since taking the reins at the Department for International Development (DfID), he has sought to pioneer a new approach to development, based on the understanding that aid is a means to an end, not an end in itself.

Despite public support for aid in the UK stuttering due to the economic downturn, Andrew Mitchell remains one of the most prominent champions for UK aid, including advocating for the current government’s commitment to spend 0.7 per cent of Gross National Income (GNI) on aid to be enshrined in law. Immunization is a personal priority for Andrew Mitchell, something he feels matches well with this ‘effectiveness’ agenda, providing tangible results in terms of those reached with vaccines and levels of disease prevented, and given that it is an investment focused for the most part on children.

Mr. Mitchell and the UK government are global leaders in supporting childhood immunization. This reached a precipice when the UK hosted the GAVI replenishment conference in June 2011, where donors pledged a combined total of $4.3 billion. This included the UK more than doubling its contribution to £814 million pounds over the period 2011-15. DfID is also a leading contributor to global efforts to combat measles and polio.

Photo credits: http://www.andrew-mitchell-mp.co.uk/about and Anthony Devlin/PA