Vaccine storage management in India

A program providing real-time information on stock and storage temperature of vaccines across cold chain points helps to avoid stock-out situations.
The Electronic Vaccine Interlligence Network (or eVIN) program was launched in India in 2014 by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in a dozen states. It should continue until 2021. The program aims to strengthen the vaccine supply chain to ensure equity in vaccine availability.

The eVIN program is an application for smartphones. It gives real time information on stock and flow, and storage temperatures across all cold chain points are transmitted on smartphones. It ensures that the supply is safe and reliable. Cold chain handlers have to enter the net utilisation of each vaccine at the end of every immunisation day. This information is then updated in the eVIN application and uploaded to a cloud server, which can be consulted at different levels (district, state or national level).

The program already shows interesting results, since the state of Chhattisgarh recently became the first to achieve 18 consecutive stock-out free days. As for the state of Gujarat, it recently reported zero stock-outs of any vaccines across all its 1,998 vaccine stores.

Doctor Manish Pant, manager at the UNDP, recently stated on the Pharmabiz website: “The health department officials and our team in Chhattisgarh deserve huge credit for this accomplishment. Many of the health workers in the state were not even familiar with the functioning of a smart phone when we started to train them. But they learned quickly and implemented the system successfully. This is the result of a collective effort [...]. Before the system was in place, overstocking and stock-outs of vaccines happened frequently at storage centres across the country. The eVIN programme helps facilitate evidence-based decision-making by making available online real-time data through the application software and temperature loggers. It has a colour-coded system which helps health workers keep track of vaccine availability. It ensures that every child gets timely and reliable doses."

Source: Pharmabiz, UNDP