With assistance from Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi) the Government of Niger conducted a pilot introduction of the HPV vaccine, beginning in 2013. The objective of the was to demonstrate in at least two districts (one rural and one urban) the capacity to vaccinate at least 50% of young girls aged 9-13 with all three doses of the vaccine before continuing into phase II and considering implementing the vaccine at national scale.
In December 2014, Niger completed phase I of this HPV vaccine pilot introduction in three districts—two urban (Niamey 3, Niamey 4), and one rural (Madarounfa). The post-introduction evaluations (PIE, coverage survey and finance and cost study) for this phase were delayed, with completion in September 2015.
Because the HPV vaccine has a different target population than the usual routine immunization (RI) schedule (i.e., HPV vaccine is targeted for girls aged 9-13 rather than children under 1 year), it was necessary to develop a strategy that ensures that key messages reach parents, girls and community leaders, and that girls are effectively mobilized for vaccination.
The original strategy employed in Niger was a combination of a school-based approach and community-based approach (outreach—for girls not in school). Due to these specificities, new partners were necessary to maximize the chance of reaching these girls, including the Ministry of Education (MoE), the Ministry of Adolescent Health (MoHA), and UNFPA, as well as NGOs/CSOs working in the areas of adolescent health, girls’ empowerment, and other related areas.
After completing phase I of the introduction, it was found that the original school and community based strategy proved to be very resource intensive and unlikely to be sustainable for scale-up. This report provides a summary of lessons learned from phase I of the introduction as well as details on the planning for phase II and considerations for scale-up of HPV vaccination.
This report details the lessons learned from introduction of the HPV vaccine in Niger. JSI, 2016.