SWITZERLAND — Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance has launched the Innovation for Uptake, Scale, and Equity in Immunization (INFUSE) 2.0, a scaling hub for innovation to accelerate immunization system upgrades in the world’s most needy countries.
INFUSE 2.0 is comprised of a group of commercial and philanthropic investors committed to assisting global health entrepreneurs.
In addition, the initiative introduces a first-of-its-kind digital platform to streamline connections between communities, innovators, and the private sector, making it easier and faster to share expertise.
In addition, impact evaluators will assist start-ups, investors, and stakeholders in better tracking and amplifying the impact of their innovations on immunization and global health.
“The pandemic has rolled back years of progress improving vaccine coverage in the world’s most vulnerable countries,” said CEO of Gavi, Dr. Seth Berkley.
“With millions more children now at risk of deadly, preventable diseases, we need to ensure the most promising, most scalable innovations reach the countries that need them, urgently. INFUSE 2.0 can do just that, bringing together investors looking for impact with entrepreneurs who can deliver it to help protect children across the world.”
INFUSE 2.0 anticipates securing at least US$500 million in private investment by 2030 to promote access to new and underutilized vaccines and immunization innovations in the fight against deadly and debilitating infectious diseases.
The new initiative expands on INFUSE 1.0, which was launched in 2016 and cultivated a community of start-up innovators overcoming vaccine delivery challenges.
INFUSE’s initial investments totaled more than US$60 million, resulting in more than US$200 million in follow-on funding for global health innovators.
Preventing vaccine damage from extreme heat or cold is one of the projects supported by INFUSE 1.0.
Nexleaf Analytics and Parsyl are deploying cutting-edge sensor technology to assist Pakistan and Mozambique in reaching under-immunized children.
Zenysis Technologies is leveraging big data analytics to improve vaccine planning accuracy; ensuring that every child is registered in the health system and receives critical vaccines.
Simprints is a biometrics pioneer in Bangladesh, Ghana, and Tanzania, with investments and support from commercial and philanthropic organizations such as Google.org, Mastercard, NEC, Tencent, and the UPS Foundation.
According to the United Nations, the COVID-19 pandemic wiped out five years of global human development progress.
The effects on already-fragile government services in vulnerable communities led to the largest drop in childhood vaccinations in three decades.
The launch will address immediate country needs and prepare immunization systems for future shocks, strengthening and scaling services and solutions more quickly than ever before.
Google has also renewed funding and support, including US$25 million in advertising grants and expertise, to help boost vaccine confidence globally.
In addition, the Coca-Cola Foundation has contributed US$1.5 million to Project Last Mile, a public-private partnership that strengthens health systems throughout Africa by transferring the Coca-Cola system’s business and technical expertise in route-to-market, demand generation, and cold chain management.
Alwaleed Philanthropies pledged US$2 million to ensure that innovations protect vulnerable children from deadly diseases.