EpiVacPlus

Partnership objectives

  1. Strengthen the technical and managerial skills of the actors involved in immunization programs
  2. Train doctors involved in the implementation of immunization programs in eleven Central and West African countries
  3. Optimization of the use of data about surveillance of vaccine preventable diseases
  4. What are the health needs and challenges?

The objective of the EpiVacPlus program is to train doctors involved in the implementation of immunization programs in 11 Central and West African countries. The objective of the EpiVacPlus program is to train doctors involved in the implementation of immunization programs in 11 Central and West African countries. Copyright Sanofi Pasteur

What are the health needs and challenges?

Many people are still dying of vaccine preventable diseases. One of the reasons is that health professionals often do not have the medical knowledge for the implementation of immunization programs.

Description of partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

EpiVacPlus, the evolution of the EPIVAC® training program, involves training, research, and support activities in field epidemiology and applied vaccinology to strengthen immunization program performance and is one of the  Sanofi Pasteur contribution to the GAVI Alliance.

The program consists in a comprehensive, one year, on-the-job professional training program in epidemiology, applied computing, vaccinology and management of health programs for public health officers in West Africa. It culminates in an inter-university diploma in “Organization and Management for Public Immunization Programs in Developing Countries” awarded by the universities of Cocody Abidjan ( Ivory Coast) and Paris Dauphine ( France ).

The objective of the EpiVacPlus program is to train doctors involved in the implementation of immunization programs in 11 Central and West African countries. EPIVAC not only utilizes classroom, on-the-job training, and distance learning, it also combines two subjects which are usually taught separately: applied vaccinology and management sciences. Participants are trained while continuing to provide vital public health services to their communities, a teaching scheme that enables learning to put into practice immediately. 

In 2015/2016 Sanofi Pasteur provided the program with an additional 500,000 euro contribution to support new actions:

-The Preventive Medicine Agency has signed up with the University Flix Houphout-Boigny (Cte d'Ivoire), University of Abomey-Calavi (Benin), University of Lom (Togo), Polytechnic University of Bobo- Dioulasso (Burkina Faso), and University Paris-Dauphine (France), an interuniversity agreement for the creation of an International Master in Applied Vaccinology (MIVA).

-EpiVacPlus also includes the EpiVac.net African immunization network which is now composed of 11 national branches. It harnesses the expertise and skills of the EPIVAC training program participants and partners. These networks advocate for immunization interventions and share essential information regarding the success of immunization programs. They also raise awareness of the challenges facing countries to protect children against life-threatening or debilitating diseases.

Lessons learned

Sustainable development is not possible without access to vaccination. But drug availability is not enough and there is a deep need for health infrastructure. Regarding the immunization programs, the key factor for this improvement is the availability of trained and motivated health professionals.

Summary of impact and forward looking information

Since 2002, more than 550 district medical officers have been trained and certified through the EpiVac program.

Sanofi Pasteur is also partnering with Gavi as Board Member, through the IFPMA. 

Partnership information

Company(ies) Sanofi

Partner(s) Agence de Médecine Préventive, Dauphine University, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, GAVI Alliance, UNICEF, Université Félix Houphouët-Boigny, World Health Organization (WHO)

Type of Partner(s) Academia / Hospitals, Government, IGOs, NGOs, PDPs

Therapeutic Focus Neglected Tropical Diseases, Vaccine-Preventable Diseases, Infectious Diseases, Women and Children's Health

Disease(s) Children's Health, Dengue, Hepatitis, HIV/AIDS, Influenza, Measles, Meningitis C, Mumps, Paratyphoid fever, Pneumonia, Polio, Rabies, Rotavirus, Rubella, Shigella, Typhoid Fever

Program Type(s) Health System Infrastructure - Training, Prevention Programs - Vaccines

Targeted Population(s) Children, Health professionals

Region(s) Sub-Saharan Africa

Number of Countries 11

Country(ies) Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Togo

Start Date 2002

More information EpiVacPlus AMP website

Anticipated completion date Ongoing