The Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) was established in 1974 to ensure that children all around the world benefit from life-saving vaccines. However, in many low and middle income countries, it is extremely difficult to vaccinate the entire population with the standard regimen of vaccines. One important reason for this is geographically dispersed or nomadic populations. To improve vaccination rates, these countries typically use outreach, where health workers take vaccines to remote locations. Outreach is the last, critical link in the vaccine supply chain, and the locations selected to offer outreach directly impact the number of additional children that can be vaccinated. This research presents four quantitative models that can be used to optimize the selection of outreach locations, in order to maximize the number of residents that can be reached; each model addresses a different type of coverage possibility. The models are analyzed and contrasted using an example with inputs generated from a subset of data from the state of Bihar in India that was made available to the authors.
- Vaccine delivery