The Democratic Republic of the Congo is pursuing financial sustainability for its immunization services through legislation, budget advocacy and expenditure tracking. The Sabin Sustainable Immunization Financing (SIF) Program began its efforts in DRC in June 2009.
Immunization Program Structure
DRC’s Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) is in located in the Disease Control Directorate, Ministry of Public Health (MOPH).
DRC’s Progress to Date
Over the period 2006-2014, the country’s Gross National Income rose from US$230 to $410 per capita, almost doubling. According to the WHO/UNICEF Joint Reporting Form (JRF), the government spent $1 on routine immunization per surviving infant in 2006. In 2014, the government spent the same amount. The government share of total routine immunization expenditures dropped from 9 percent to 5 percent over the period. Since 2010, DRC has reported consistently on JRF financial indicators. The data suggest that DRC has not progressed towards country ownership of its immunization program. Among SIF countries, DRC ranked 20th in terms of routine immunization spending per surviving infant in 2014.
SIF provides a tool for analyzing how efficiently recent immunization budgets have been executed. In 2014, EPI team completes annual SIF Budget Flow Analyses for 2010-14 using the SIF Budget Process Tool.
The EPI team captures subnational expenditures using a tool called Formulaire 6, which distinguishes public from external partner contributions. In October 2015, the team analyzed the Formulaire 6 data from four districts.
In May 2012, the National Assembly established the Parliamentary Support Network for Immunization. The network includes around fifty Members of Parliament, ministry officials, EPI staff, other health professionals and partners. Network members have visited eleven provinces to advocate for increased immunization budgets. Increases have been reported in eight.
The DRC’s national parliamentary network served as a model for a similar Africa-wide effort. In February 2016, an MP from DRC attended and signed a Parliamentary Statement in Support of the Ministerial Conference on Immunization in Africa. The statement calls on all 47 African countries to form a Regional parliamentary immunization support network.
Section VII, Article 204 of the Constitution empowers provinces to organize basic health services, including immunization campaigns.
The government began drafting an immunization bill in 2012. In June 2014, work shifted from a stand-alone bill to an immunization-related health bill. In September 2015, the committee completed the immunization-related section of a legal proposal to draft the health bill. In March 2016, a companion national immunization policy paper was finalized and presented with the draft bill to the National Assembly for review.
- September 2010, November 2012, December 2014, June 2016: Cameroonian counterparts join DRC, Congo, Malgache, Malian, and Senegalese peers in Sabin-sponsored peer review workshops
- March 2016: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer co-organizes legislative consultation on immunization-related health bill
- October 2015: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer organizes expenditure tracking workshop
- August 2015: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer and SIF Program Director brief the Senate Vice Chairman and National Assembly President on immunization financing issues
- October 2013- December 2014: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer and MP network members visit Maniema, Orientale, Kasai-Occidental and Kasai-Oriental, Bas-Congo and Katanga provinces
- July 2013: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer co-facilitates provincial financial management workshop
- June 2013: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer organizes a legislative workshop
- June 2012: DRC counterparts review Madagascar’s draft immunization law in Sabin-organized study tour
- July 2010: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer and SIF Program Director brief authorities in Katanga and Bas-Congo provinces
- June 2010: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer and WHO co-organize MP briefing
- September 2009: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer organizes first MP briefing
- June 2009: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer and SIF Program Director introduce SIF program to DRC government
Last Updated July 11, 2016