This is the third post in a blog mini-series from the Dengue Vaccine Initiativeabout the collaborative work being done to ensure future access to dengue vaccines in developing nations.
Due to limited resources, low-income countries often find it difficult to finance the incorporation of newly developed vaccines into public immunization programs. As a large majority of dengue endemic countries are also low-income countries, DVI recognized the need to address the issue of financing if it were to honor its mission of ensuring a future dengue vaccine reached the world’s most vulnerable populations. Leading DVI’s financing activities for dengue vaccine introduction is the International Vaccine Access Center (IVAC).
IVAC is an organization operated at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. IVAC’s mission is to accelerate global access to life-saving vaccines through development and implementation of evidence-based policies. IVAC works on numerous vaccine initiatives to address incomplete epidemiological information, outdated policies and market barriers that often prevent access to vaccines.
IVAC’s contribution to DVI is three-fold: First, IVAC is working to develop a strategic demand forecast that will estimate dengue vaccine use between 2014-2030. A strategic demand forecast is an estimate of the amount of vaccines required over time. These forecasts can be used to build evidence-based decisions at all levels, as well as allow stakeholders to consider how the forecast’s underlying assumptions impact supply and demand. IVAC is also working to create actionable business cases for at least one manufacturer and evidence-based investment cases that will be delivered to one country in both Asia and Latin America.
Second, IVAC is evaluating the financing strategies utilized by the focal countries in the IVI case studies. Evaluations will include an analysis of financing options to pay for potential dengue vaccines, an analysis to estimate the impact of dengue vaccines on the annual healthcare budget of a purchaser over time (budget impact analysis) and an analysis to determine the most optimal mix of dengue prevention and control strategies (budget optimization analysis). IVAC is particularly interested in financing mechanisms that can be transferred and implemented successfully in different countries and settings.
Leaving the sphere of financing, IVAC’s third and final contribution deals with vaccine regulation. IVAC is lending its expertise to the World Health Organization’s Initiative for Vaccine Research (WHO IVR), another DVI consortium member, to train national regulatory authorities (NRAs) in regards to the licensure of dengue vaccines. NRAs are responsible for guaranteeing that publicly distributed products meet international standards of safety and quality. IVAC is specifically training NRAs on reviewing protocols for dengue vaccine clinical trials.
Be sure to check back next week as we profile another DVI consortium member.