Request for Letters of Inquiry: Development of a Rapid Immunity Assessment Tool
New grant programme for global health
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is focused on ensuring that all children have equal access to the immunisations they need to protect them against vaccine-preventable diseases. The Gates Foundation endorses and strives for the goals outlined by the Global Immunisation Vision and Strategy (GIVS), of at least 90% vaccination coverage in every country, and at least 80% coverage in every district.
Regular measurement of vaccination coverage across the developing world is important to assess progress against coverage goals, and to identify areas of weakness in delivery systems so that corrective action can be taken. Current tools and processes to measure vaccination coverage have significant limitations, which can lead to reliance on imprecise estimates of coverage.
This Request for Letters of Inquiry will solicit proposals from organisations to develop a prototype and detailed commercialisation plan for an immunity assessment tool that can more accurately measure vaccination coverage in the developing world.
Current tools and processes to measure vaccination coverage have significant limitations. For example, coverage estimates can be inaccurate because of:
- uncertainty in population estimates of surviving infants;
- inaccessibility of households in some regions due to political insecurity and/or geographic constraints;
- inaccuracy of parental recall of vaccines administered and/or home-based vaccination cards which are not universally distributed or retained;
- or difficulty of conducting sero-surveys by collection of blood samples.
The goal of this project is to significantly improve upon the current tools and processes in terms of accuracy of results and ease of use in the field.
The goal of our programme
The purpose of this request is to solicit inquiries toward the development of a prototype and commercialisation plan for an easy-to-use tool that rapidly assesses the immune status of children against selected vaccine-preventable diseases (for example, tetanus, measles, etc.). The ideal tool would be low cost and easy to use in the field by those working in national immunisation programmes. This tool would be used as an adjunct to current vaccination coverage surveys to help more accurately determine and validate coverage levels and assess population-level immunity.