- Public Private Partnerships: As the financial responsibilities needed in vaccine production are daunting, there is a need for joint efforts of the private sector and the public sector in funding the sector. Governments need to see health issues as important and make huge investments in health research and specifically vaccine research for emerging health threats; this should be a priority for governments of all African countries. The public sector should also give financial support to both private companies already in the process of providing vaccines and potential ones, in order to translate their research efforts into tangible productions. Governments should also establish more schools, research centres and courses in virology just as NGOs, public, and private donors continue to fund more vaccine development projects for impactful contributions to sustainable health. GSK, one of the famous producers of vaccines stresses the need for partnership to attain sustainable vaccine production. Government should therefore partner the private and manufacturing companies in investing in vaccine production and not leave it solely to the affluent companies.
- Incentives: A way African governments can stimulate vaccine productions is by providing incentives to willing and capable individuals, youths, and industries. Incentives such as reduced/tax credits, grants and sponsorships for promising youths, including awards and rewards, can be introduced to prompt interests and encourage independent researchers. Some African universities, notably the Redeemers University in Nigeria, has expressed interest and begun the development of a possible vaccine for the Lassa Virus. The government, private, and international actors should support such steps as well as encourage of other potential discoveries.
- Improving capacity in research institutes: By providing the necessary infrastructure, training and skills, more capable researchers can be budded while more players can gain access into the drug manufacturing industry.
- Patenting: Patenting procedures should be simplified to accommodate new developers.
- Promotion: African nations should promote the need and urgency for vaccine manufacturing, especially for the plaguing African diseases; Ebola and Lassa, using all means, especially the media and other means to create awareness.
- Collaboration with other developing/developed nations: America and Europe are world leaders in the production of vaccinations; African nations need to partner with them to get lasting solutions to vaccination production and administration. Furthermore, African nations should collaborate with other developing nations already making efforts at entering the global vaccine market, like China, in order to achieve the general aim of innovating potent vaccines that would bring sustainable vaccine production.
Although Africa has been declared Ebola free, cases of Lassa have reduced, and no new public threat has been discovered on the continent recently, vulnerable regions and parts of Africa must be defensive against these diseases in case they spring up again since they have always existed before the latest recurrence. The time has come for WHO and researchers not to relapse or give in to the researches just because outbreaks have reduced. In addition, this is the time for all Africans, especially drastically affected regions to work at finding lasting vaccines to these health threats. Furthermore, proactive is inevitable before the continent is plunged into another round of infectious disease outbreaks. Innovating and providing vaccines are important parts of sustainable health that must be given more attention, especially in a susceptible continent.
Africa Health Ministry Issue #16, March (2013), The State of Health Financing in the African Region
GSK: Economics of Vaccine Development
Koff, W., (2014), Status of HIV Vaccine Research and Development: AVI
Oxford Journals, Vol. 201, Issue 11 pg. 1607-1610, The Journal of Infectious Diseases
The Royal Society (2006), Vaccines: Innovation and Human Health