LNCT Member Newsletter March 2019

LNCT Updates

LNCT Steering Committee Holds Inaugural Meeting
LNCT’s steering committee held its inaugural meeting this February with representation from the Nigeria and Georgia country teams, as well as from Gavi, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, WHO, and UNICEF.  The launch of the steering committee marks an important moment in the evolution of the network and will ensure that LNCT remains guided by member country priorities and partner technical expertise. The steering committee endorsed LNCT’s new membership policy, which allows a broader set of countries to access LNCT resources and allows LNCT to draw on those countries’ experiences. LNCT members can access the meeting minutes
 by logging into our Resource Library.

Introducing the New lnct.global
Earlier this month, we launched a series of exciting updates and new features, including interactive dashboards to monitor transition progress, on lnct.global. The transition dashboards can be found on our new focus area pages, which can be accessed from our homepage. Our goal with these new website features was to make it easier for you to explore key resources, stay up-to-date on recent immunization news, and find information to support a successful transition. We hope you like the changes. We encourage everyone to explore the new site and to share any questions or feedback with LNCT Network Coordinators at info@lnct.global and to share any insights from the country data in this discussion forum thread.  If you’re having trouble accessing the LNCT website, please contact info@lnct.global for account support.

LNCT Network Coordination Director Announces Upcoming Activities 
At the end of February, LNCT Secretariat Director, Grace Chee, published a letter on lnct.global to thank you all for your continued engagement with LNCT and to announce some 2019 activities that we’re particularly excited about. We hope you’ll read through it and tune in for additional updates on how each of the activities are progressing.

European Regional Vaccine Procurement Workshop – See you in Tbilisi!
We are looking forward to seeing our European members in Tbilisi, Georgia April 10-12 for our regional Vaccine Procurement Workshop, which we are co-hosting with the UNICEF Vaccine Procurement Practitioners Network (VPPN). Countries will spend three days in focused discussion and knowledge-sharing around vaccine regulation, forecasting and budgeting, and vaccine procurement with other countries in their region and global experts. They’ll also have an opportunity to learn from the Georgia experience through a field visit. We encourage attendees to share their learnings from the workshop on our discussion forum. And, for our African and Asian countries, your turn is coming! Please keep an eye out for news about other regional workshops later this year.

Country Spotlight

Angola to Partner with Brazilian Training Institutions
 In collaboration with the Angolan authorities and partners, LNCT will contribute to the capacity building component of the Gavi post-transition  plan, including in-person and long-distance training programs and a partnership arrangement between Brazilian and Angolan training institutions with Gavi and BMGF funding. Discussions with country officials are underway to provide support for implementation of the capacity building plan and development of capacity building curricula for priority competencies. LNCT will also facilitate learning regarding good practices within partnership arrangements to maximize effectiveness and share that with the network. Please look for more information in future newsletters.

Nigeria Releases Money for the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund
This post originally appeared in the World Bank’s quarterly Multi-Donor Trust Fund for Externally Financed Programs. The Federal Government of Nigeria released NGN13.75 billion ($38.14 million USD) for the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund (BHCPF), which was designed with the support of the World Bank over the last few years. The fund will bring much needed operational financing for a basic package of highly cost-effective interventions. Given that immunization is included in the package, this new development is particularly critical for ensuring sustainability of the immunization program as the country transitions from Gavi and the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) support.

Highlights from our Partners

New Training Video from TVEE’s Course, Applied Health Economics in Africa: Using Examples from Immunization
During a pre-session congress from the recent AfHEA Conference, Teaching Vaccine Economics Everywhere (TVEE) held a training on applied health economics with a focus on practical examples from immunization. The course focused on developing skills in economic evaluations, carrying out a cost effectiveness and budget impact analysis, and building local capacity in vaccine economics. The training video from the live session can be viewed on TVEE’s YouTube account.

Why is Measles Back and Spreading?
Heidi Larson, Director of the Vaccine Confidence Project, LSHTM, appeared on Al Jazeera in a program about why measles is back and spreading. “There is no one main driver of measles and that is part of the challenge. We do see a dramatic 83,000 cases of measles across Europe alone, and there we know it’s not education, it’s not income, it’s less likely to be access, there’s more choice to refuse a vaccine.”

Vaccines: Tackling Viral Misinformation
Richard Clarke, a PhD researcher at the Vaccine Confidence Project, LSHTM, was featured on a Science Disrupt podcast about vaccines and tackling viral misinformation. Richard said: “If a rumour is spreading and causing a dip in vaccine uptake it can sometimes be necessary to find community leaders to communication your message for you.”

Featured Resources

New Blended Finance Roadmap for Global Health
Blended finance – the strategic use of public and philanthropic resources to mobilize private capital to achieve development outcomes – can be an important tool to address health financing gaps.  This blended finance roadmap from USAID serves as a practical resource to help USAID, other donors, and partners identify blended finance opportunities to achieve health goals. It also features country deep dives and illustrative blended finance instruments in India and Tanzania, demonstrating how this roadmap can be applied in global health across different country contexts.

Sabin Vaccine Institute Releases Report on Legislative Approaches to Immunization Across the European Region
In 2018, the Sabin Vaccine Institute conducted a review of immunization legislation in the region. Sabin’s new report, Legislative Approaches to Immunization Across the European Region, examines how all 53 European countries have approached immunization legislation, with a focus on two specific aspects of legislative frameworks: 1) approaches to requirements for immunization and 2) surveillance of and compensation for Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFI). Also included in the report are five case studies – the Baltic states, France, Moldova, Nordic countries, and Ukraine – which examine how each country implements and finances its immunization program and how legislation is used to support these efforts.

Looking Ahead

Immunization Economics Organizing iHEA Pre-Congress Session in Basel
As part of the 2019 International Health Economics Association (iHEA) biennial world congress in Basel, Switzerland, the Immunization Economics Special Interest Group (SIG) is organizing a pre-congress session on July 13-14. Individuals interested in the generation and use of information surrounding immunization costing, financing, and value of vaccination – this session is for you! Interested participants are invited to submit a poster presentation, which may consist of a research study, field work, or public health practice and implementation showcase. Immunization Economics will provide funding support towards travel and accommodation costs to 5 high-scoring submissions ($2,500 each). Please complete the submission form, which includes general info, resume, 100-word statement on the relevance and significance of this work, 100-word methodology detail, and a 300-word abstract, no later than Friday March 29, 2019.  

Upcoming LNCT Webinar Will Focus on Private Sector Engagement
LNCT’s upcoming webinar around private sector engagement will present different ways that the MoH engages with private sector entities to support immunization program performance. Participants will learn about experiences from three countries with different models for engaging with private providers. The webinar will conclude with a discussion of the role that LNCT could play to facilitate and support the MoH to develop fruitful relationships with private entities.

WHO 1st Global Course in French on Health Financing for UHC
The WHO is launching its first Global Course in French on Health Financing for UHC, which will take place in Geneva on 17-21 June 2019. Details on the course are available in French on lnct.global.

Upcoming Webinars Hosted by Vaccine Procurement Practitioners Network (VPPN) to Focus on Systems Strengthening
The VPPN is organizing two upcoming webinars relevant for LNCT members on systems strengthening. The first, to be held tentatively on March 27, will focus on Regulatory Systems Strengthening, and the second, will be held at the end of April, and will be centered around Supply Chain Strengthening. For more information, please login to the VPPN using your VPPN account credentials. LNCT will also share additional details on our website as they become available.

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