Framework for Strengthening Capacity of National Immunization Services
GAVI partners define capacity building as enhancing the ability of national immunization systems to increase and maintain access to immunization services, decrease the burden of vaccine-preventable diseases, and expand the use of safe and cost-effective vaccines.
The starting point of capacity is the ability to identify and document problems on the ground and the power to address them at the most appropriate level and context.
For GAVI partners, capacity building is a cross-cutting issue that involves the task forces: financing, advocacy, R & D and country coordination, regional working groups and ICC partners at country level.
GAVIs strategy to build capacity has two prongs:
- at national level to use a systematic five-step approach (benchmarking, assessment, planning, implementation, monitoring) to address gaps in immunization systems; and
- to map and coordinate GAVI partner activities at global and regional level to better understand and harmonize address relevant unfilled gaps and support country-level activities.
Implementation of this strategic framework at the national level will differ from previous efforts in that it encompasses the operational elements of immunization systems defined by WHO (service delivery, vaccine supply & quality, logistics, surveillance, advocacy & communication), but also targets and focuses capacity building activities on the three underpinning health system functions: financing; management; and institutional and human resource strengthening. Thus, the framework emphasizes links to national governance and broader health sector development.
The five-step approach will use and strengthen the mechanisms already endorsed by the GAVI partners: ICCs; assessments; and the multi-year immunization plan.
To minimize the burden in countries, the capacity strengthening framework will proceed as far as possible using information already collected as part of the GAVI process.
The next step will be to benchmark "best practices" and to test an operational framework for assessment and strengthening of national capacity-building in 10 to 12 high- and low-performing countries from different regions. This will contribute to strengthen the capacity-building component in multiyear plans and focus partner support at country level.
Link to WHO training website
Link to World Bank flagship course website
Background paper, "Strategic Framework for Assessing and Strengthening Capacity of National Immunization Services" (June, 2001)
Materials from an immunization strengthening workshop in Annecy, France (April, 2001)