Vodacom Group (Vodafone) has announced that it will work with the African Union Development Agency to build digital infrastructure to manage COVID-19 vaccinations across 55 African countries.
This comes after successful deployments of digital platforms by Vodacom in South Africa to manage vaccinations and deployments in Mozambique, Tanzania and Nigeria, to manage infant inoculations.
The roll-out of mVacciNation, developed by Mezzanine, a member of the Vodacom Group, is the first project in a public-private partnership that has been formed between Vodacom Group and AUDA’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) to boost Africa’sdigital transformation and build resilience for the post-Covid world.
“Vodacom has been at the forefront of helping governments where we operate to curb the spread of COVID-19,” says Shameel Joosub, CEO of Vodacom Group.
“Making our mVacciNation platform available to all African countries will significantly enhance the continent’s digital health infrastructure for the long-term. Our contribution will improve the capability of African countries in this pandemic and beyond for vaccine distribution, management and surveillance, even in resource-constrained settings,” he added.
CEO of AUDA-NEPAD, Dr. Ibrahim Mayaki says, “The response to the COVID-19 crisis has significantly accelerated the adoption of frontier technologies. Africa’s booming digital sector offers great opportunities for public-private partnerships to help build resilience in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis and respond to critical continental priorities. As the development agency for the African Union, we act as a channel to connect innovators and governments to roll out and localize these solutions.”
mVacciNation has two core components and a control tower, to ensure people get the right vaccine, at the right place and time. A supply chain component provides real-time information for health workers of all available vaccines and medical equipment (like syringes and supplies) nationally.
A beneficiary management component allows individuals to register on the platform and assigns them to vaccine service points on a specific day and time. A ‘control tower’ allows for the orchestration of stock to specific vaccination centres.
Each time someone is vaccinated their digital record is updated and, if a further dose is required, mVacciNation automatically schedules and sends a follow-up date via SMS. Once vaccination is completed, the individual will receive electronic certification.
Vodacom is the second telco to have partnered AUDA in the fight against Covid-19, particularly, vaccination. The MTN Group has given the AU US$25 million for the acquisition of vaccines for all African countries.
Ghana is for instance slated to receive at least one million vaccines from that package, out of which it recently took delivery of 165,000.