Proving Actionable Insights to the Vaccine Market The global push to vaccinate children over the last two decades has saved countless lives. Yet, many of the newer vaccines that protect children and infants from life-threatening diseases and infections, such as for human papillomavirus, pneumonia, and rotavirus, are freeze sensitive and cost far more than other vaccines. For example, in 2015, UNICEF procured approximately US$1.7 billion worth of vaccines for immunization programs, of which more than $1.2 billion were freeze sensitive. Yet, according to a recent literature review in the April 2017 issues of Vaccine, accidental freezing of vaccines occurs in 37% of storage facilities in lower income countries, and in nearly 20% of vaccine shipments - with limited knowledge of when, where and why vaccines are compromised.
Parsyl, a private company, has developed a low-cost sensor, data platform and reporting system to provide donors, governments, health systems and logistics providers with actionable insights to address the problem throughout each stage of the supply chain, including delivery and storage in remote "last mile" communities. In partnership with GAVI (the Global Alliance Vaccine Initiative), Parsyl is piloting the solution in Senegal and Uganda to demonstrate its effectiveness and ability to scale in the publicly funded vaccine market in a commercially sustainable manner. UP has provided both a grant for piloting in the vaccine market and an investment to help build the company, both to serve this market and to achieve its broader mission of improving the safety and performance of sensitive and perishable products by providing enhanced supply chain visibility.