Pharmacovigilance and Surveillance Training on Adverse Events post-COVID-19 Vaccination

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June 14, 2022
Lead Paragraph/Summary

The rapid uptake of COVID-19 vaccinations in Angola has brought an urgent need for monitoring the population after vaccination. To meet this need, the Angolan Ministry of Health (MOH) established post-vaccination surveillance sites at each vaccination point, providing assurance of active monitoring.

Trained technicians were needed to respond to adverse events following immunization (AEFIs). GHSC-PSM collaborated with the MOH in contracting with a pharmacovigilance specialist consultancy to develop training guides on AEFI surveillance.

Pharmacovigilance Master Training in Angola
Pharmacovigilance Master Training in Angola
A pharmacovigilance master training taking place in Angola.
Body Text

GHSC-PSM and the consultancy provided extensive training to 23 master trainers on pharmacovigilance and COVID-19–related topics, such as COVID-19 vaccines, debunking vaccine rumors, means of communication, and notification of cases. The 23 national-level master trainers went on to train 338 technicians across 17 provinces.

Provincial and municipal supervisors, as well as health care workers, participated in the training to ensure that technicians were available in every province and municipality across the country to respond to AEFIs. The project and the consultancy provided training guides to provincial and municipal trainers to expand training in their respective areas. Post-tests revealed that technician knowledge of surveillance and COVID-19 topics improved significantly after the training.

Since completion of the training, the number of technicians notifying AEFIs has increased, in turn strengthening the notification system. Technicians have gained confidence in filling out the notification form and responding to AEFI concerns. The GHSC-PSM team assisted the MOH in supervising vaccination points to ensure that they were adequately staffed and operational and that established procedures were followed.

The Causality Committee, established by the MOH, investigates severe AEFIs. In collaboration with the World Health Organization, GHSC-PSM has been assisting the MOH in equipping the committee secretariat to ensure investigations are conducted with the AEFIs before submitting a final report to the health minister.