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External Evaluation of the International Group on Vaccine Provision (ICG) mechanism
Field of Expertise:
Health Service Delivery; Communicable diseases (CD); Infectious diseases / epidemic / outbreak / vaccination; Medical Products, Technologies; Policy/Strategy/DRA; Pharmaceutical markets (shaping, assessments, studies)
Narrative description of project:
The ICG mechanism was created by WHO, UNICEF, IFRC and MSF 20 years ago in a rather ad hoc fashion to deal with a shortage of meningitis vaccines for reactive immunisation campaigns in response to seasonal outbreaks of meningococcal meningitis in the Sahel Zone of Africa. The Secretariat was assigned to WHO. The main purpose was to create a stockpile and to ration the supply of scarce vaccines and antibiotics (oily chloramphenicol) to prevent a depletion of global stocks in case of a major outbreak in countries with low purchasing power.
The ICG has since evolved to include yellow fever and oral cholera vaccine, the Gavi Alliance became the sole funder of emergency stockpiles and the UNICEF Supply Division the sole procurement agent.
Given these changes, and the emergence of global disease control initiatives for yellow fever and cholera, the ICG partners asked for an evaluation and for input into a high-level consultation on the future of the mechanism. An earlier evaluation for meningitis vaccines commissioned by Gavi was not accepted by the other partners.
The evaluation was politically sensitive as there were tensions among the partners, and different visions, including the complete dissolution of the mechanism and the transfer of the task of vaccine stockpile management to another partner or network.
The evaluation methodology included document review, group discussions, key informant interviews, e-surveys and social network analysis. Several options for future governance structures, role and organisational development were proposed. A consensus was reached amongst all ICG partners.