Supply chains play a critical role in improving health, saving lives, and reducing under-five mortality. After all, as I've heard several logisticians say, "if you have no product, you have no program." And it is true, especially in a field like immunization. If you can't get vaccines to the hospitals, clinics, health posts, and outreach sites, you cannot counsel your way through a vaccination. You need products. Period.
And they need to be fresh. Not expired, not frozen, not heated. They need to be juuuuust right.
But that's not all. You also need auto-disable syringes, reconstitution syringes, safety boxes, and diluent. You need a trained health worker. And you need someone to vaccinate, usually at a very precise moment in their lives.
And you all need these things in the same place at the same moment.
Without fail.For every vaccination session.
Everywhere in the world.
Today's immunization programs are larger, more expensive, and more ambitous than ever before in history, making immunization supply chains incredibly complex systems that require resources, technologies, and strategies to make them work better.
Global immunization partners recently put together a set of key messages that can be used when communicating with less-technical colleagues about the need for and value of next-generation immunization supply chains. We encourage you to use these messages for documents, reports, presentations and anything else you might need when communicating the need for stronger supply chain systems. We also welcome your feedback to make these messages stronger and more powerful.
Working together, we can envision and build next-generation immunization supply chains. An important first step is to communicate more clearly about what a supply chain is, the value it offers, and the potential it can have in making a program like immunization successful.