Vaccines save lives – but running an effective vaccination program requires data from multiple sources to be made available to the right people, easily and quickly. Information like whether a fridge is working, where stock is located, which staff have been trained and whether facilities are hitting their immunisation targets. Earlier this month, with the support of the Gates Foundation and DFAT, we launched a new Immunisation Dashboard in the Tupaia app, which is helping to improve immunisation coverage and strengthen vaccination supply chains in Vanuatu’s Shefa province.
This project began back in April 2018, when mSupply Mobile tablets were first installed at 7 health facilities around Efate. mSupply Mobile enables electronic management, tracking and ordering of medicines. Under our Gates Foundation grant, we have worked with mSupply to build a vaccines module in mSupply Mobile and in addition to this, we are collecting live fridge temperatures, facility surveys and vaccine coverage information, compiling all of the data in Tupaia. Previously, accessing this information in one place has not been possible, as it has been administered manually using numerous methods and health information systems.
To collect immunisation data at each of the health facilities and successfully introduce new mobile reporting tools, we’ve been working with public health managers, health administrators and zone supervisers, the Expanded Program on Immunisation (EPI) Pharmacy Division, Health Information Systems unit and Shefa provincial health teams within the Vanuatu Ministry of Health.
A crucial factor when it comes to administering immunisation medicines effectively, is being able to quickly find out what and where supplies exist and if there are any stock outs of vaccines at specific health facilities. Now that this information can be accessed in real-time, time delays can be reduced and immunisation supply chain systems can be strengthened through powerful data integration via DHIS2 software.
Another win for health facilities and health workers in the Shefa province is the addition of automated fridge temperature tracking fridge devices, which allow temperature information to be monitored and tracked within the Tupaia dashboard. This means national and provincial health workers can see live information for individual health facilities via the Tupaia dashboard (see below) and take action if there are any persistent temperature breaches.
To support the roll out of the Immunisation Dashboard our Vanuatu Program Manager, Sera Ngeh facilitated a three day workshop this month in Port Vila, with Results for Development (R4D) who are conducting the monitoring and evaluation for this project, using a process called Adaptive Learning. We’re proud to be working with R4D who have partnered with us thanks to support from DFAT’s innovationXchange. National and provincial managers and health facility staff from the Ministry of Health attended the workshop, along with lead software developers from Tupaia and mSupply. Baseline interviews and follow-up survey data that was collected by R4D and local researchers from March to June this year was presented during the workshop for discussion and action planning. These baseline surveys covered areas on the immunisation supply chain, reporting data and workflows as well as current immunisation barriers in Vanuatu.
We will continue to support health workers at a national, provincial and health facility level understand and use mSupply Mobile for their medical and vaccine stock management and ordering and increase digital literacy around the use of this technology to improve immunisation coverage in Vanuatu.
Whilst access to the immunisation module is password-protected, if you would like a live demo, please don’t hesitate to get in contact. To check out the other features in Tupaia for yourself, log into www.tupaia.org and explore the data.