UNICEF East Asia and Pacific receives support from the Government of Japan

The UNICEF East Asia and Pacific Regional Office received USD$10 million from the Government of Japan to support digital immunization tools in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Mongolia, the Philippines, Timor-Leste, and Viet Nam. The donation will serve to strengthen health systems in the six countries with Immunization Information Systems and digital health efforts that allow for the monitoring of vaccination coverage and individuals receiving immunization. An estimated 13.5 million people will indirectly be reached through these interventions, including over 1,400 health facilities and 4,300 health workers.

Dr. Myo-Zin Nyunt, Deputy Regional Director of the UNICEF East Asia and Pacific Regional Office, said that despite the ongoing progress of digital health across the East Asia and Pacific region, many Health Management Information Systems remain largely paper-based. These paper-based forms need to be transcribed, increasing the risk for errors and preventing access to real-time data.

“The valuable contribution from Japan will help ensure that no child misses out on life-saving vaccinations by supporting the establishment of more sophisticated and robust vaccine delivery systems that are fully integrated in the existing health ecosystems.” said Dr. Myo- Zin Nyunt.

Core functionalities of the Immunization Information Systems include timely monitoring of immunization schedules, increased vaccination data timeliness, quality and completeness and identification of those who are unvaccinated, often called zero dose individuals.

Previously UNICEF East Asia and Pacific partnered with the Government of Japan to operationalize its “Last One Mile” flagship initiative ensuring that every person in every country gains access to COVID-19 vaccinations through strengthened health systems equipped with temperature-controlled environments to store, manage and transport these life-saving products.

In the last two years, the Government of Japan provided US$119 million to 74 countries, including nine countries in East Asia and the Pacific. UNICEF, along with its partners, supplies vaccines to 45 per cent of the world’s children under five in over 100 countries. UNICEF works with governments, the private sector, NGOs, and other UN agencies to engage communities, procure and distribute these vaccines, whilst keeping supplies safe and effective and ensuring affordable access for even the hardest-to-reach families.

Source: UN Children’s Fund