Vietnam is pursuing financial sustainability for its immunization services through expenditure tracking. The Sabin Sustainable Immunization Financing (SIF) Program began efforts in Vietnam in October 2012.
Immunization Program Structure
Vietnam’s Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) is located in National Institute for Hygiene & Epidemiology (NIHE).
Vietnam’s Progress to Date
Over the period 2006-2014, Vietnam’s Gross National Income rose from US$760 to $1,890 per capita, a 149% increase. According to the WHO/UNICEF Joint Reporting Form (JRF), the Vietnamese government spent $5 on routine immunization per surviving infant in 2006. By 2014, this figure had risen to $9, an 80% increase. While increasing in absolute terms, the government share of total routine immunization expenditures dropped from 65% to 44% over the period. Since 2010, Vietnam has reported consistently on JRF financial indicators. The data suggest that Vietnam has progressed towards country ownership of its immunization program. Among SIF countries, Vietnam ranked eleventh in terms of routine immunization spending per surviving infant in 2014.
The Constitution of Vietnam, Chapter III, article 39 states: “The state shall invest in, develop and exercise its unified management over health care activities for the people. It shall mobilize and organize all social forces to build and develop Vietnamese medicine, especially preventive medicine; combine disease prevention with medical treatment; develop and combine modern and traditional medicine and pharmaceutical practices; combine the development of state health care with folk medicine; offer health insurance; and create conditions for citizens’ access to medical care.”
Passed in 2007, the Law on Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases guarantees immunization financing. Clause 1, Article 30 states that “the State shall ensure funds for the use of vaccines and medical bio-products.”
Prior to 2013, nearly half of Vietnam’s provincial immunization programs tracked expenditures. That year, nearly all did so.
In September-October 2015, a parliament and government team visited three provinces to survey the past year’s subnational expenditures. In October, the delegation used this information to prepare the FY2016 budget.
The National Immunization Program presented the aforementioned data to the federal government, which allowed the Program to avert a planned budget cut for FY2014.
This same initiative resulted in an approved budget increase for FY2015 and FY2016.
- October 2015: Senior Program Officer organizes Sabin-sponsored parliamentarian briefing
- October 2015: Senior Program Officer joins Sabin-sponsored visit to province
- September 2015: Senior Program Officer joins Sabin-sponsored visit to Thua Thien Hue and Then Giang provinces
- October 2014: Vietnamese counterparts survey Mongolia’s immunization law and fund in Sabin-sponsored study tour
- July 2014: Vietnamese counterparts join Mongolian, Indonesian, Nepalese, Sri Lankan, and Cambodian delegates in Sabin-sponsored peer review workshop
- May 2014: Senior Program Officer and Vietnamese officials visit Hai Duong province in Sabin-sponsored briefing
- November 2013: Vietnamese counterparts join Mongolian and Indonesian delegates in Sabin-sponsored peer exchange workshop
- August 2013: Vietnamese counterparts attend Sabin-sponsored colloquium
- May 2013: Senior Program Officer organizes sub-national briefing
- October 2012: Senior Program Officer and Program Director introduce SIF program to Vietnamese government