Thoughts from the Last Mile Welcome to the VillageReach Blog

Tag Archives: Innovation

06.22 2016

In 2014, Africa.com published a list of the 10 jobs that will be the most sought in Africa in the near future. It comes as no surprise that logistics and supply chain management related jobs made it to the list, identifying supply chain managers as a driving force of economic growth in Africa.

Me & Dr Mukengeshayi, SG of DRC

Speaking with Dr. Mukengeshayi Kupa, Secretary General of the Ministry of Health, DRC

After attending the recent Immunization Supply Chain Leadership Conference in Abidjan, I felt that this was also true for the public health sector. The eleven African countries represented were all speaking with one voice: they need the right person at the right place to lead the next generation of immunization supply chains (iSC).

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05.02 2016

Donor support and new partners like  Johnson & Johnson will help expand and enhance CCPF in the coming year.

A family using CCPF

We are pleased to announce that Johnson & Johnson Corporate Contributions has become one of the key partners in championing Chipitala Cha Pa Foni (CCPF) as it advances towards national scale.  Johnson & Johnson Corporate Contributions is a known supporter of community-based health care solutions that strengthen the health workforce, save and improve the lives of women and children and prevent disease among the most vulnerable.

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04.25 2016
immunization supply chain in Mozambique

Dr. Ramos Mboane

Summary: Dr. Ramos Mboane, Provincial Chief Medical Officer in Mozambique shares insights on key factors countries should prioritize to make #vaccineswork.

 This post is part of the #ProtectingKids story roundup. Read all the stories here


During World Immunization Week, people from all over the world are talking about one thing: how do we reach more children with the vaccines that they need? As someone responsible for overseeing the immunization program in my province, this is an issue I think about every day.  We all know that there are many reasons children fail to get immunized, and when I think about closing the immunization gap – in Niassa, and for other communities like us around the world – these are the things I think are most important:

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03.28 2016

Could UAVs Reduce Waiting Time for Pediatric HIV Test Results?

UAV in Malawi

Photo: UNICEF – Children observe the UAV launch in Malawi

I have experienced quite a few “firsts” since joining VillageReach, but by far one of the most exciting is the experience participating in the first tests of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) (commonly known as drones) for HIV sample transport* in Malawi. VillageReach is currently working with UNICEF and Matternet, a leading UAV company, to test and assess the feasibility of UAVs, with critical implications for the treatment of HIV in children.

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12.22 2015

In response to this article by Dr. Mahad Ibrahim on the role of data during the Ebola outbreak, some interesting questions were sparked among our team. The piece evoked a lot of great insights about the opportunities and challenges the piece addresses, as well as how we see those topics evidenced in our VillageReach work. This topic is of particular interest to us, as we and our partners at the University of Washington are actively developing and testing an open-source tool for paper to digital data conversion, ODK Scan.

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12.01 2015
Today the world recognizes World Aids Day – a day to unite in the fight against HIV and to support the millions of people around the globe living with HIV.

In conjunction with World Aids Day, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has published a new report – Empty Shelves, Come Back Tomorrow – evaluating the current incidence of HIV for four of the worst HIV-affected countries in sub-Saharan Africa including Mozambique.  In the country, 11% of the adult population is HIV positive, but only 45% of those affected receive the required level of treatment.   As the report notes about Mozambique “… there is no funded regular last mile delivery and stockouts are seen at facility level.”

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11.23 2015

Insights into the GHSCS Prize for Supply Chain Excellence in Global Health in Low- and Middle Income Countries

Portuguese version of this post

Out of five global health supply chain interventions nominated, the Dedicated Logistics System in Mozambique was selected as the winner of the Prize for Supply Chain Excellence in Global Health in Low- and Middle Income Countries, presented at the 2015 Global Health Supply Chain Conference in Dakar, Senegal, November 2015.

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10.12 2015

I recently had the opportunity to represent VillageReach and the Malawi-based mHealth program Chipatala Cha Pa Foni (CCPF) at a capacity building workshop hosted and facilitated by Open Capital, an ICT organization based in Nairobi, Kenya. I joined 10 other grantees of the United Nation Foundation’s Innovations Working Group, an initiative committed to advancing the the use of mobile technology to improve health outcomes – particularly as it relates to development in low- and middle-income countries.

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08.20 2015

Ready, set, go! And they’re off!

That’s how the introduction of Rotavirus happened in Mozambique. The country has been planning on this for a while, but, as often happens, it seems to come down to the wire to work out the details of how to get more than 1 million vials of Rotavirus vaccines out to more than 1,400 health centers across the country.

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06.05 2015

The 15th TechNet Conference convened last month in Bangkok, bringing together a global network of professionals and practitioners committed to strengthening immunization services in developing countries.  As my first time attending, it was a great opportunity to “geek out” about vaccines with a whole bunch of other vaccine “geeks.” The conference presented a mix of global policies and trends, as well as presentations from different countries on innovations for the vaccine supply chain that are improving efficiencies and increasing vaccine coverage rates. It was an opportunity to share experiences and learn from others’ work around the world.

Tech Net-21

Tech Net-21 Group Photo, courtesy of TechNet-21

A few key themes emerged from the conversations and presentations during the conference:

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Malawi healthcare worker