- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 27, 2015

BERLIN (AP) - Governments and private donors, among them the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, have pledged a record $7.5 billion to replenish a global vaccination program for the poor.

The Gates Foundation gave $1.55 billion to the public-private Gavi alliance that has immunized hundreds of millions of children worldwide since 2000.

Britain pledged $1.57 billion, Norway gave $969 million and the United States pledged $800 million at a conference Tuesday in Berlin.

Together with prior pledges this provides Gavi with a pot of $9.6 billion - slightly more than it requested - for its work between 2016 and 2020.

The Geneva-based organization said that the money would help immunize an additional 300 million children against preventable diseases, providing one of the most cost-effective ways to prevent millions of premature deaths.

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