Cameroon is pursuing financial sustainability for its routine immunization services through new financing arrangements, budget advocacy and resource tracking. Sabin’s Sustainable Immunization Financing (SIF) Program worked with officials in Cameroon from 2008 to 2016.
Immunization Program Structure
Cameroon’s Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) is a division within the Ministry of Health (MOH).
Over the period 2006-2014, Cameroon’s Gross National Income rose from US$960 to $1,350 per capita, a 41 percent increase. According to the WHO/UNICEF Joint Reporting Form (JRF), the Cameroonian government spent $6 on routine immunization per surviving infant in 2006. By 2014, this figure had increased 17 percent, to $7. During the same period, the government share of total routine immunization expenditures dropped from 57 percent to 21 percent. Since 2010, Cameroon has reported complete and consistent JRF financial data. The data show that Cameroon has progressed towards country ownership of its immunization program. Among SIF countries, Cameroon ranked 16th in terms of routine immunization spending per surviving infant in 2016.
The Constitution of Cameroon, Part X (Articles 55–62), states that 10 semi-autonomous regions, ruled by regional councils, have responsibility for “economic, social, health, educational, cultural and sports development.”
In July 2011, a committee designated by the Minister of Health and Parliament prepared a draft bill establishing a national immunization fund. In November, the council of ministers directed that the bill be revised to set aside funds for all communicable disease control programs, including immunization.
In 2013, an MOH-led working committee began drafting regulations for the proposed Health Support Fund, which would be included in a larger proposed Health Law.
In November 2014, the scope of the proposed fund was reduced to cover just vaccines and antiretroviral drugs. The Inter-Ministerial Committee approved the completed Health Law containing the HIV section in March 2015.
In October 2015, the draft bill was expanded to include a National Public Health Agency. After the draft bill was finalized and approved by the Ministry of Finance Health Budget Director in November 2015, the bill was then submitted to the MOH Cabinet Legal Department for review.
In April 2016, the draft bill was revised to remove a proposed tax earmark and substitute a voluntary government financing mechanism.
In September 2015, the EPI team used budget data to successfully advocate for an approved FY2016 immunization budget increase.
In February 2016, a Cameroonian MP attended and signed a Parliamentary Statement in Support of the Ministerial Conference on Immunization in Africa.
SIF provides a tool for analyzing how efficiently recent immunization budgets have been executed. In September 2015, an EPI team completed annual SIF budget flow analyses for 2010-15.
- September 2010, November 2012, December 2014, June 2016: Cameroonian counterparts join DRC, Congo, Malgache, Malian, and Senegalese peers in Sabin-sponsored peer review workshops
- May 2012, November 2014, October, November 2015, April 2016: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer co-organizes national legislative and financing workshops
- June 2015: Cameroonian counterparts join Malian and Senegalese peers for Sabin-sponsored resource tracking workshop in Dakar, Senegal
- September 2014: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer, EPI team, and NGO Immunization Platform integrate SIF budget flow analysis, cMYP costing tools
- August 2014: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer, WHO, and UNICEF counterparts organize advocacy technique workshop for MPs, Association of Women Mayors
- August, December 2009, June, July 2011: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer organizes parliamentary briefings
- October 2008: Resident Sabin Senior Program Officer and SIF Program Director introduce SIF program to government and parliament
Last Updated July 11, 2016