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Vaccine Advisory Firm for Central and West Asia /

Funded by the Asian Development Bank, Vaccine Advisory Firm (VAF) for Central and West Asia is a consortium between Crown Agents and FHI 360 to deliver technical assistance to  Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

The Central and West Asia region has faced enormous challenges over the last decade in reforming their healthcare systems, including scarce public resources, a need for more advanced and sustainable technologies for medical capacity building, inequalities across the urban and rural populations, an increasingly aging population and the rise of noncontagious diseases As the region enters into its second year of delivering Covid-19 vaccine to its citizens, the current publicly available data is showing that coverage is still largely inequitable.

Starting in 2021, VAF is delivering a range of technical assistance activities, cross-cutting four main technical areas, including immunisation, procurement, vaccine delivery and vaccine development. Consisting of a total of 24 international, regional, and local experts working together to support the countries in the roll out of COVID-19 vaccination programmes, the programme is working closely with each country’s Ministry of Health to support local needs. At the same time, it creates regional synergy by centralising immunisation strategies and good practice models, facilitating awareness around procurement targets, needs and opportunities, streamlining distribution processes and identifying opportunities for local vaccine capacity and development.

The programme also developed targeted training material for health workers to urgently correct misinformation and increase trust in COVID-19 vaccines and immunization programmesTo achieve this, four video clips were designed to ensure rapid dissemination and sustainability. Leveraging VAF’s knowledge and research studies in the region and working closely with the ADB, the governments, the vaccine suppliers, and the manufacturers, VAF structured the content based on a framework of 4 key technical objectives, including immunization regulatory objective, immunization scientific objective, immunization process objective and supply chain objective. The videos can be accessed through VAF’s Youtube channel.

In collaboration with The Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Programme (CAREC), a partnership of 11 countries and development partners, VAF organized a series of webinars at regional level to facilitate the discussion with the countries and identify their main support requirements. Below you can find some of their background materials.