Releasing a video message via the World Health Organisation ahead of this year’s annual European Immunisation Week, the 45-year-old said during her three-and-a-half-minute message that “the effect of persistent rumours can cause some people to delay or decide against vaccination but no rumour can be as compelling as the simple truth that vaccines save lives.”
"Relatively few people living in the region today will ever experience firsthand the effects of polio, measles, mumps, congenital rubella syndrome, diphtheria, ptosis or tetanus," the mother-of-four said.
"Sometimes we take these achievements for granted, which makes celebrating European Immunisation Week even more important."
The Princess, who married Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark in 2004, continued, "Europeans tend not to associate death or illness from vaccine-preventable diseases with their own communities, unfortunately, such preventable tragedies are not as far from home as we might like to think. Recent outbreaks of measles remind us that vaccine-preventable diseases can affect people of all ages and that timely vaccination is a lifelong responsibility."
"Every new case of cervical cancer is a reminder that action is urgently needed to educate parents and their children about the importance of vaccination in the teen years.
"Every pneumonia death is a reminder that influenza kills and that the best defence is vaccination, especially for pregnant women, health workers and the elderly.