Tips for data analysis
Inferences from the data of the immunization financing database should be drawn only with a good understanding of their limitations as these can make cross-country comparisons imperfect and subject to misinterpretations.
To mitigate these when making cross-country analyses, we recommend that users:
- Focus analyses using programme specific costs only since shared costs are not always provided by countries in their Financial Sustainability Plan (optional data requirement).
- Focus analyses by working with costing, resource requirements and financing for routine immunization delivery (Routine) rather than for the entire National Immunization Programme (NIP). This eliminate the variability of campaign spending which is not comparable across countries and years.
- Check the "other recurrent" and "other capital" cost categories and what these include. Consider excluding them in comparative analyses when their content vary across the countries included in the analysis.
- When searching the database, read all footnotes to the data and any data related issues.
- Ensure that countries are compared not only on the basis of their costs, but according to similar vaccination schedules and coverage performance. It is important to recognize that GAVI countries do not all introducing the same new and under used antigens (Hepatitis B, Haemophilus Influenzae type B or Yellow Fever) nor use the same presentation (monovalent or combined with DTP). The base level of routine immunization coverage also varies widely across countries. Thus, the impact of the introduction on countries’ cost structures is not strictly comparable at a given point in time.
- Ensure that comparisons are made across corresponding years. Note that because countries are at different stages of new vaccine introduction, it is difficult to make comparisons across countries on the VF year – some have introduced the vaccines on a broad scale, while others made the programmatic decision to gradually phase in the introduction; starting with the high-performing districts before nationwide introduction. Cross-country comparisons are likely to be more reliable on the pre-VF year (or baseline year).
- When calculating indicators (e.g. cost per capita, cost per DTP3 child) use the same source for the denominator. Population and immunization coverage estimates are available in the WHO Vaccine Preventable Diseases Monitoring System.
- Some guidance on how to graphically present the cost per capita or the cost per DTP3 child indicators is available from the following document: