H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has disclosed that his Government intends to establish a National Vaccine Institue as part of realizing the goal of producing vaccines locally in Ghana.
He said this during his State of the Nation Address in Parliament on Wednesday.
“The world before COVID now seems such a long time ago, and the trauma of a world ruled by a pandemic has changed all our perspectives. Back in March 2020 when the first cases of COVID hit our country, we and the rest of the world were in unchartered territory, fear and sheer terror gripped our land. Probably, to future generations, it will look quite obvious what should have been done, but, two years ago, it felt like we had fallen into a dark, malicious, and terrifying abyss”.
Nana Addo said Ghana could not have been prepared for the catastrophe that hit us, even the richest economies with the most sophisticated structures were unprepared.
“Maybe some of us have forgotten what the experts were predicting at the time. Our health and medical infrastructure was woefully inadequate, and we would not be able to cope. There were going to be piles of dead bodies strewn across the streets of Africa.” he recounted.
“Mr. Speaker, the Presidential Vaccine Manufacturing Committee, which I set up to respond to this obvious deficiency, has put in place a comprehensive strategy for domestic vaccine production, and the establishment of a National Vaccine Institute to implement the strategy, which will enable us to begin the first phase of commercial production in January 2024”.
According to the President, he will be bringing the bill to Parliament for consideration very soon.
“A Bill will shortly be brought to you, in this House, for your support and approval for the establishment of the National Vaccine Institute.”
The President said the pandemic exposed other shortcomings of our country, which have, undoubtedly, contributed to the anxieties that have befallen the nation.
“At the normal rate of growth, we are not likely to make up the deficit in our health facilities infrastructure for a very long time. Hence, the need for a special, dedicated programme of infrastructural development.”
Ghana is scheduled to fully transition from Gavi support by 2027 and will need to cover all its routine vaccine needs which is estimated at approximately USD 30 million per annum. The estimate for immunizing the population target of 20 million people for COVID-19 is over $250 million. There is the need for Ghana to achieve self-sufficiency in vaccine manufacturing to meet its needs and place it in a position to manage future pandemics by being able to readily manufacture and deploy vaccines. Against this background, the President of the Republic of Ghana commissioned and tasked the Committee on Vaccine Manufacturing to develop a roadmap to ensure the establishment of vaccine manufacturing in Ghana to meet country and regional needs. The Presidential Vaccine Manufacturing Committee (VMC) has recently developed a draft comprehensive 10-year roadmap for vaccine manufacturing in Ghana with support from GIZ. A detailed feasibility study on vaccine production is being planned, however, in the interim, it has become necessary to conduct a scenario analysis to inform the Vaccine Production Committee, GOG, and Development Partners. It is with this background that this TOR has been developed. More information available at the bottom of this advert.
OBJECTIVES OF THE ASSIGNMENT
1. To advise on the viability of local vaccine production based on demand forecasting and the existing industry (global) structure.
2. To determine the cost of establishing and operating a fill-and-finish vaccine plant in Ghana for both Glass vials filling and BFS vial filling lines (CAPEX & OPEX).
3. To determine what financial arrangements all the potential vaccine manufacturers can put forward as local investors.
SCOPE OF WORK
1. Estimate year-on-year demand for selected childhood immunization vaccines and COVID-19 vaccines over a 10-year horizon from 2023 as the baseline year in Ghana.
2. Based on 1 above build scenarios for local production versus imports with regards to pricing and volumes, considering the following:
a. At what volume of production will Ghana made vaccines be cost-effective compared to imports (currently imported vaccines) taking into consideration cost of Goods, Insurance, Freight, and other levies;
b. Optimum price of COVID-19 vaccine to be cost-effective based on cost simulations.
c. Based on industry CAPEX and OPEX estimates, how long will a fill and finish investment take to break even, and at what optimal level of production (production volume and value).
3. Based on 1 & 2 above what will be the minimum offtake guarantee per year from the GOG for the project to be investable? And what would be the minimum period to grant advanced market commitment to the project by GOG and Partners.
4. Based on 1 to 3 provide an advisory on the viability of local production of the vaccines.
5. Draw examples and best practices from other comparable countries and projects.
6. Provide visibility on historical purchases and projections of vaccines (2015-2025) in Ghana, to identify potential off-takers / partners of the vaccine project
7. Determine the potential risks to this investment and possible mitigation plans
1. Presentation of findings to the Vaccine Manufacturing Committee, and selected development partners
2. Final scenario analysis report
3. Risks and mitigation plans
QUALIFICATIONS AND REQUIREMENTS
The individual/consortium must be well versed in Ghana and West African public health systems.
This assignment shall require the services of three consultants, notably:
1. National Consultant- to collate all the historical vaccines supply data from the government and all other partners who have been involved with vaccine supplies to Ghana eg. GAVI, UNICEF, etc and any other local information required by the International Consultant
2. International Consultant: to do the investment modelling, demand analysis and liaise with the Vaccine Manufacturing Consultant
3. Vaccine Manufacturing Consultant: to determine the cost of a fill-and-finish vaccine plant including equipment; give a plant with various capacity scenarios and their costs.
METHOD OF APPLICATION
Qualified individuals/consortiums should send a proposal containing the following where applicable:
• A brief outline of the organization and services offered, including:
• Full legal name, the jurisdiction of incorporation, and address of the company
• Year business was established
• Copies of legal registration, tax identification number, bank account
• Proposed plan and methodology indicating how you will go about the assignment
• Evidence of similar work done
• Contact details of relevant references
• For both individuals and consortium, a CV of Lead Consultant is required
Applications should be in MS Word or PDF and submitted via email by 11:59 PM on 17 September 2021. Please Note: Applications should be no more than 6 pages. CVs should be submitted as appendices.
METHOD OF ASSESSMENT
Individuals/Consortium will be assessed based on the understanding of the subject matter, the quality of their proposal, and their ability to provide a plan of how they intend to carry out tasks as stated within the terms of reference.
The Jobs for Economic Transformation in Ghana (JET) Programme is funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO). The programme is FCDO Ghana’s flagship investment-led job creation programme that will help Ghana transition away from aid dependence in line with the GoG “Ghana beyond Aid” strategy. It seeks to leverage increased investments into the manufacturing and industrial sectors, and introduce new technology and management capabilities, increasing the capabilities of the workforce generating formal employment and economic diversification.
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted health systems, ravaged economies, and laid bare the vulnerability of countries. The disease has been associated with grave socio-economic consequences, particularly for developing countries.
Ghana recorded its first cases in March 2020 and since then the number of cases has been rising with increasing fatalities. As at 25th July 2021, Ghana’s confirmed case count stood at 103,019 with 823 deaths.
The introduction of vaccines greatly reduced the incidence and impact of severe cases of the disease in countries that deployed them such as the UK and USA, reducing morbidity and mortality. However, vaccine nationalism has affected the worldwide availability and distribution of vaccines, especially in Africa despite the setting up of the COVAX facility to ensure equitable access. Currently, many developing countries, Ghana included, are struggling to receive adequate doses of the COVID-19 vaccines needed to vaccinate their vulnerable populations.
The emergence of SARS-Cov-2 disease (Covid-19) on the world stage has exposed serious gaps in the worlds’ ability to deal with public health emergencies. Vaccines undoubtedly have proven to be a very successful and cost-effective healthcare tool in the management of human epidemics, saving countless lives annually. Thus, developing capacity for vaccine production to contribute towards the management of vaccine-preventable diseases for the improvement of human health is not a misplaced priority.
Historically, Africa has sourced its vaccines from India but most of the main actors in vaccine manufacturing are largely from the developed countries. Africa’s potential remains largely untapped due to the chronic failure to invest in science and technology infrastructure and human capital development. Africa accounts for 25% (1.3 billion doses) of global human vaccine consumption but unfortunately, only 1% (12 million doses) is manufactured in Africa with 99% being imported. Currently, there is no production of COVID-19 vaccines in Africa with South Africa’s Aspen Pharmacare and Biovac having recently concluded tech transfer partnership arrangements with Johnson and Johnson and Pfizer respectively; the continent is therefore totally dependent on the benevolence of bilateral and multilateral partners.