Strengthening Immunization in Afghanistan

Speeches Shim

OVERVIEW

  • Implementation period: September 2013 - August 2015
  • Project budget: $1.2 million

The Strengthening Immunization in Afghanistan project supports the Afghanistan Ministry of Public Health’s (MoPH) efforts to improve Expanded Program of Immunizations (EPI) operations. EPI is a standard vaccination series given to all children that provides immunization against preventable childhood diseases. The U.S. Government’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is a key participant.

Afghan children badly need greater access to immunization. A recent coverage survey showed that of the children ages 12-23 months surveyed, only 51 percent were fully immunized.

The Strengthening Immunization in Afghanistan project helps address this need by helping the MOPH in three key areas: data management, management and accountability of immunization activities at provincial and district levels, and improved planning and coverage in low performing districts.

ACTIVITIES

  • Data management: Train MoPH staff in the use of new program software and analysis of program reports.  This software will improve the tracking of MoPH data and aggregate data from health facilities reporting from the field.
  • Management and accountability:  Establish a system of quarterly performance reviews and supportive supervision to 80 Afghan professionals responsible for managing the MOPH’s immunization program.
  • District planning:  Enhance capacity in 40 poor performing districts to better plan for and conduct - immunization campaigns.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS

  • Developed database software to track children reached by the public immunization system. The software is installed in facilities in these six pilot provinces: Kandahar, Hirat, Kunar, Helmand, Nangarhar, and Kabul.
  • Equipped provincial EPI offices with IT equipment in the six pilot provinces, enabling them to properly manage, analyze, and provide feedback to health facilities to improve immunization coverage.
  • Developed modern EPI reporting forms and trained provincial and regional EPI management teams in their use.  
  • Held a national immunization meeting involving health representatives from all provinces to review the current status of EPI management.
  • Conducted a provincial EPI review in Kabul province to review the existing immunization program.
  • The MoPH identified and selected forty low performing districts for enhanced outreach at the community level with input from provincial directors in six pilot provinces.
  • Completed baseline assessments of routine immunizations in health facilities in the 40 districts. 

Last updated: May 07, 2019

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