Helping countries understand vaccine delivery costs

Girl getting vaccinated

June 8, 2018 – A new online catalogue that provides information on the costs of delivering immunizations in 31 countries is aimed at helping decision-makers, particularly in low- and middle-income countries, better understand the long-term costs of running vaccination programs.

The Immunization Delivery Cost Catalogue is hosted under the Immunization Economics global collaborative, which is based at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and led by Stephen Resch, principal investigator of the EPIC project and deputy director the School’s Center for Health Decision Science (CHDS).

The collaborative’s website——includes tools, questionnaires, publication lists, and a data repository that can be used by countries or funding organizations to assess the true cost of immunization programs with a high degree of accuracy. Work on the new catalogue was conducted by ThinkWell, a health systems development organization, through the Immunization Costing Action Network (ICAN) project, which is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

According to Christian Suharlim, research associate at CHDS and public affairs director for the collaborative, data on immunization costs is often fragmented, of variable quality, and difficult to access and use. The new catalogue should help address these issues.

“Policymakers, program planners, and other global and country-level stakeholders require easy access to high-quality and user-friendly data,” he said. “Our platform helps them get the necessary data to make an informed decision or pursue further study.”

Karen Feldscher

photo: Carlos Alonso/CDC

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Helping nations assess and manage immunization costs (Harvard Chan School feature)