Through programme capacity assessments, joint appraisals and other discussions with countries, Alliance partners have identified a range of challenges in the area of leadership, management and coordination of immunisation programmes.

In the past, this area has received limited attention and investment. To address this, we are investing more deliberately in strengthening in-country leadership, management and coordination (LMC) in the 2016–2020 strategy period.

GAVI’S APPROACH

Three elements, which have a catalytic impact on the sustainable delivery of immunisation programmes, are part of our approach:

  • strengthening government EPI teams at the national level (or subnational level where relevant) with the aim of improving their structures, capabilities, processes and practices; and
  • boosting national coordination forums, such as interagency coordination committees (ICCs) or health sector coordinating committees (HSCCs), to improve their functionality.
  • enhancing the ability of national immunisation technical advisory groups (NITAGs) to advise countries on their immunisation programmes.

We provide different types of support to strengthen EPI teams, national coordination forums, and technical advisory groups. These are applied and adjusted based on each country’s specific context, needs and requests for support.

EPI teams

Countries can request Gavi support to strengthen the capacity of their national immunisation teams.

A MENU OF INTERVENTIONS

Gavi offers a “menu” of interventions that countries can access to address their immunisation management challenges.

STRENGTHENING MANAGERIAL CAPABILITIES

Gavi partners help countries to strengthen the managerial capabilities of their EPI teams. For example, a “management partner” can be embedded as a peer coach in the EPI team for one or two years.

In addition, Gavi is developing an innovative management training course for EPI managers and core staff members.

ENHANCING PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT PRACTICES

Countries can request support to strengthen practices related to performance management. This type of support , provided by Gavi partners, aims to create lasting behaviour changes and build a greater sense of accountability.

This may include helping EPI teams to use data-driven tools and hold high-level review meetings to ensure that programme implementation is on track.

ENSURING ADEQUATE TEAM CAPACITY

Countries in the initial self-financing and preparatory transition phases can request Gavi funding for critical new government positions in their immunisation teams. To mitigate risk and ensure sustainability, countries must meet strict requirements to be eligible for this support.

Technical advisory groups

National immunisation technical advisory groups, or NITAGs, guide policy and programme decisions at country level.

NITAGs play a critical role in ensuring sustainable immunisation programmes. They promote evidence-based decisions and enable countries to take full ownership of their policies and immunisation programmes. To be eligible for new vaccine support from Gavi, countries must explain how NITAGs are involved in their decision-making processes.

NITAGs provide objective recommendations based on scientific evidence in areas such as:

  • new vaccine introduction decisions;
  • specific product choices and characteristics; and
  • immunisation schedules and practices.

STRENGTHENING NITAGs

A wide range of tools are available here to support countries in creating, strengthening and evaluating NITAGs. Countries can also request technical assistance from Gavi to strengthen their NITAGs.

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