EBODAC – tools designed to promote acceptance and uptake of new Ebola vaccines.
Grameen Foundation, based in Washington D.C., was founded in 1997 with the aim to increase poor people’s access to microfinance in order to enable them to create a world without poverty. GF fields of operation include finance, health and agricultural projects in several countries around the world. They bring a mix of financial services – loans, savings, insurance – to the rural poor and connect farmers to markets, help them grow more high‐value crops, and enable them to demand better prices. The foundation works also with government agencies, the private sector, and civil society to develop mobile health solutions aimed at the improvement of health outcomes of the poor.
The EBODAC project (Ebola vaccine Deployment, Acceptance, and Compliance) is developing strategies and tools to promote the acceptance and uptake of new Ebola vaccines, to help the right person receive the right vaccine at the right time.
EBODAC is supporting clinical trials of Ebola vaccines in Sierra Leone, while simultaneously preparing for the future deployment of a licensed vaccine through a series of linked projects focused on communications, community engagement, and enabling technologies. – Developing and implementing a Community Engagement Strategy to build awareness and trust, and mechanisms to rapidly respond to any concerns or rumors related to the vaccine trials.
– Developing and implementing identification tools to ensure the right volunteer receives the right dose of vaccine at the right time.
– Implementing mobile phone technology to ensure widespread and timely reach in rural settings and that clinical trial participants remain engaged throughout the study and attend clinic visits.All components of the EBODAC platform are designed and developed to allow rapid and efficient scale-up should there be a need to deploy a licensed vaccine.
The EBODAC project was intended to develop a communication strategy and tools to promote the acceptance and uptake of new Ebola vaccines. The resource limitations associated with work in poor, remote areas presented major challenges. In remote locations in Sub-Saharan Africa, lack of electricity and connectivity is a common obstacle. This has a great impact on the types of ICTs that can be used, as electrical power and data transfer are fundamental to their usability. Thus one of the project’s most important products is a platform, based on mobile technology, dedicated to Ebola vaccines.
Working with Grameen Foundation, SolDevelo was responsible for implementing a web application service which involved extensive usage of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems and notifications via SMS, in order to facilitate the widespread and timely reach of clinical trial participants. Later part of EBODAC project introduced vast reporting capabilities for tracking trial participants clinical visits attendance and vaccination coverage. A number of metrics were used to assess the success of the program. Reports greatly affected and improved fact-based decision making about the strategies applied in the project.
EBODAC system leveraged the established e-health MOTECH platform originally developed by Grameen Foundation. By using MOTECH capabilities, the EBODAC platform was able to interconnect with various related platforms, such as IVR, EDC (Electronic Data Capture) system through FTPS (File Transfer Protocol Secure) and biometric recognition system through REST API.
As well as providing local communities with information on Ebola and vaccines, the platform sends reminders to people to get their second ‘booster’ dose and facilitates the tracking of vaccination coverage. EBODAC is also setting up local training programmes to make sure the communication strategy, and its tools, are ready for deployment in the local setting.
Members of the EBODAC consortium
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
World Vision Ireland
Reference link: www.imi.europa.eu
This project has received funding from the Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 Joint Undertaking under grant agreement EBOVAC1 (grant nr. 115854), EBOVAC2 (grant nr. 115861), EBOMAN (grant nr. 115850) and EBODAC (grant nr. 115847). This Joint Undertaking receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and EFPIA.
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