A health worker transfers vaccines into coolboxes. Credit: Gavi/2007/Katerine Brisebois.
Kigali, 9 May 2018 – The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Wholesalers (IFPW) and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, announced today the expansion of their partnership to improve immunisation supply chain leadership in Africa and Asia. IFPW’s additional support, totalling GBP 1 million, will extend the Strategic Training Executive Programme (STEP) while drawing on private sector resources and expertise to train supply chain managers in more Gavi-supported countries.
IFPW’s renewed commitment to Gavi includes both financial and in-kind support. The GBP 1 million support package will finance STEP’s rollout in 2018 to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Nigeria, Benin and Mozambique, among others. At the same time, IFPW members will help nurture talent by sharing knowledge and management expertise through the programme’s facilitation and mentorship elements. IFPW members that have supported both the existing and new partnership activities include AmerisourceBergen, Eurapharma, GSK, Imperial Health Sciences and others. GSK has led the way in providing financial support for the scale up of the STEP programme, as well as industry expertise through the provision of private sector mentors.
IFPW’s contribution not only brings catalytic funding which will be essential to implementing STEP in more countries, it also provides invaluable expertise to create sustainable, systemic change in health supply chains.
Gavi Deputy CEO Anuradha Gupta
“IFPW’s contribution not only brings catalytic funding which will be essential to implementing STEP in more countries, it also provides invaluable expertise to create sustainable, systemic change in health supply chains,” said Gavi Deputy CEO Anuradha Gupta. “With country demand increasing, what began as an effort to foster regional supply chain expertise in East Africa has extended well beyond this goal. Our continued partnership with IFPW allows even more Gavi-supported countries to benefit from improved management of health supply chains," she added.
The expansion of STEP is a result of significant country demand for stronger capacity in supply chain management. Between 2016 and 2017, STEP trained 76 participants from 15 countries. Graduates have gone on to train other health professionals in effective vaccine management, multiplying the programme’s impact. By the end of 2020, Gavi and IFPW expect more than 500 immunisation supply chain leaders to graduate from STEP programmes across Africa and Asia.
STEP has helped create transformational change in vaccine delivery. With support from local partners, as well as stronger political engagement, these improvements to the supply chain have led to increased immunisation coverage in Gavi-supported countries.
The STEP Program, and its unique mentorship component, serves as the ideal vehicle to deliver the necessary ‘soft skills’ and empowerment needed to those individuals that will be challenged to drive tomorrow’s change ...
IFPW Foundation Executive VP Chris Goetz
“As an organisation representing the world’s leading supply chain experts for medicines, vaccines and other health commodities, IFPW highly values its partnership with Gavi and the pathway it creates for sharing its members’ capabilities and experience from the private sector. Our shared goal of developing future supply chain leaders in Gavi-supported countries has the potential to systemically improve health systems and their performance,” said IFPW Foundation Executive VP Chris Goetz. “The STEP Program, and its unique mentorship component, serves as the ideal vehicle to deliver the necessary ‘soft skills’ and empowerment needed to those individuals that will be challenged to drive tomorrow’s change; and we look forward to expanding the programme even further in the years to come,” he added.
The partnership between Gavi and IFPW began in 2015 with a GBP 1.5 million investment from the IFPW Foundation that was doubled by the UK’s Department for International Development through the Gavi Matching Fund. With the support of IFPW, United Parcel Services and UNICEF, STEP launched in October 2015 at Rwanda University’s East African Community Regional Centre of Excellence for Vaccines, Immunisation and Health Supply Chain Management (RCE-VIHSCM) in Kigali. A year later, the LOGIVAC Centre in Ouidah, Benin also began offering the programme.
Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance is supported by donor governments (Australia, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, the People’s Republic of China, Republic of Korea, Russia, South Africa, Spain, the State of Qatar, the Sultanate of Oman, Sweden, United Kingdom, and United States), the European Commission, Alwaleed Philanthropies, the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, as well as private and corporate partners (Absolute Return for Kids, Anglo American plc., The Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, China Merchants Group, Comic Relief, Deutsche Post DHL, the ELMA Vaccines and Immunization Foundation, Girl Effect, The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Wholesalers (IFPW), the Gulf Youth Alliance, JP Morgan, “la Caixa” Foundation, LDS Charities, Lions Clubs International Foundation, Majid Al Futtaim, Orange, Philips, Reckitt Benckiser, Unilever, UPS and Vodafone).
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