ThinkWell has released two new reports on the cost of delivering COVID-19 vaccines in Mozambique and the Philippines, aiming to support governments and address the knowledge gap on the cost of these vaccination programs. In partnership with the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane and Ateneo de Manila University, ThinkWell conducted retrospective, bottom-up costing studies, as well as qualitative assessments of operational and financial bottlenecks.
In Mozambique, the financial cost per dose delivered was $0.96 during the initial roll-out period when vaccine supply was limited, and $0.43 per dose during a later period when the program had ramped up (December 2021 to February 2022). The low financial cost found by our study reflects inadequate funding as opposed to the program being inexpensive to implement. Even in areas that were donor-supported like transport and per diem, funding fell short, and due to pre-existing health worker shortages, the C19 vaccination roll-out may have caused disruptions to other health services.
In the Philippines, the financial unit cost was much higher, at $1.43 per dose during the first mass campaign (National Vaccination Day), and $2.42 during a later period of routine-style delivery, though the cost varied widely across types of vaccination sites. Unlike many other countries, the Philippines was able to rapidly mass hire additional health workers, which alleviated health worker shortages but drove up the financial cost.
These studies are part of multi-country project that utilizes standardized methods to generate cost evidence on the delivery of C19 vaccines in low- and middle-income countries. Findings from Côte d’Ivoire and Vietnam are already available, and the reports from Bangladesh, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Uganda will be published early next year.