To determine whether the existing Expanded Programme on Immunization EPI in Bangladesh has the capacity to introduce the hepatitis B virus HBV vaccine, this study was carried out in all the nine health facilities, which maintain a cold-chain, in Chandpur district of Bangladesh.
The research, focusing specifically on cold-chain equipment, aimed at developing and applying an indicator of the use of cold-chain equipment. A structured questionnaire, developed and field-tested, was used for collecting information on cold-chain equipment and their use-rate. Data were used for estimating the resources needed to introduce the HBV vaccine and for increasing the coverage of measles and DPT vaccines.
The findings of the study showed that the use-rate of cold-chain equipment in this district was low, suggesting that the district has sufficient spare capacity to introduce and sustain the storage of an increased quantity of vaccines. This paper suggests an approach to study capacity in relation to infrastructural facilities. By measuring the capacity of capital equipment, the study has illustrated that the measurement of resource-use rates provides useful information about the burden that a new vaccine places on the EPI.
Trama, A.; Walker, D.; Fox-Rushby, J. Introducing hepatitis B virus vaccine into the Expanded Programme on Immunisation in Bangladesh: a proposed method to evaluate whether the existing infrastructure has the capacity. Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition (2005) 23 (1) 25-33.