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Introducing Essential Resource Collection: Integrating COVID-19 Vaccination into Primary Health Care


Natalie Apcar

Erica Nybro

isit of a clinic run by Concerned Women for Family Development. CWFD runs 22 clinics throughout the country and targets women of urban slums and other poor urban communities. Photo: Rama George-Alleyne / World Bank
Visit of a clinic run by Concerned Women for Family Development. CWFD runs 22 clinics throughout the country and targets women of urban slums and other poor urban communities. Photo: Rama George-Alleyne / World Bank

Knowledge SUCCESS and the USAID COVID-19 Response Team collaborated on this fourth and final COVID-19 vaccinationfocused Essential Resource Collection. This collection includes a list of tools that will help programs integrate COVID-19 vaccination into primary health care (PHC). 

Why We Created This Collection  

Given the evolving epidemiological nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, government priorities have had to adapt to changing population needs. At first, national governments mobilized to launch rigorous mass vaccination campaigns in phased approaches. Now, as the virus becomes less of a daily threat and strain on health systems, the focus shifts to activities that integrate COVID-19 vaccination into life course vaccination programs and other PHC services and routine immunization plans.

Governments, donors, and program implementers are building on lessons learned from COVID-19 to foster resilient health systems that can accommodate new vaccines and withstand future pandemics. USAID and the WHO have shared guidance to assist countries with this integration process, including examples of how to integrate COVID-19 vaccination activities into standard primary health care services. This Collection serves to organize this guidance and related tools such as checklists, frameworks, and case studies that can help countries integrate COVID-19 vaccination into PHC.  

How We Chose the Resources 

Knowledge SUCCESS and USAID identified COVID-19 vaccination integration as a priority topic early in the implementation of the Knowledge SUCCESS COVID-19 KM scope of work. In alignment with this priority and other related activities—such as the development of a supplement on the same topic for the Global Health Science and Practice (GHSP) Journal, coming in December 2023—Knowledge SUCCESS began collecting integration-related resources as early as January 2023 and organizing them based on the WHO health system building blocks.  The guidance from the WHO and corresponding building blocks (pictured below) provide a useful framework for countries considering how to link COVID-19 vaccination, immunization programs, and the broader health system. 

Vector graphic of one person holding a flag, walking up a hill and helping the person behind them climb the hill; meant to signify leadership.

Leadership & governance

Health systems financing

Vector graphic of a hand holding a needle; meant to signify vaccination.

Service delivery

Vector graphic of three doctors

Health workforce

Vector graphic of a megaphone

Demand generation & community engagement

Vector graphic of a laptop with the first aid symbol on the screen

Health information systems

Vector graphic of a gear with three circles orbiting it; meant to signify supply chain

Supply chain management

What is Included in This Collection?

Resources in this collection are available in a diversity of formats, such as journal articles, case studies, PowerPoint presentations, digital tools, checklists, and more. The resources that can be categorized by specific building block are marked accordingly, but many cut across multiple building blocks. All resources are meant to reflect the changing context of various country vaccination experiences, including as longer-term policies for COVID-19 vaccination are formulated. These resources are not meant to outline a prescriptive approach, but rather to present considerations and options for countries to consider and apply based on their needs and contexts. 

We hope this Collection directs governments, program implementers, and other stakeholders to key guidance tools, as well as more informal examples of integration that may resonate in their own country contexts. An orientation around the seven health systems building blocks provides a holistic, health system-wide framework for the integration of COVID-19 vaccination into PHC. The lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, when integrated into primary health care, will lead to more resilient health systems that are better prepared for future health emergencies. 

Natalie Apcar


Natalie Apcar is a Program Officer II at the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, supporting knowledge management partnership activities, content creation, and communications for Knowledge SUCCESS. Natalie has worked for a variety of nonprofits and built a background in planning, implementation, and monitoring of public health programming, including gender integration. Other interests include youth and community-led development, which she got the chance to engage in as US Peace Corps Volunteer in Morocco. Natalie earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from American University and a Master of Science in Gender, Development, and Globalization from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Erica Nybro


Erica Nybro is a Senior Program Officer II at the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, specializing in COVID-19 since 2021. Erica has an MPH from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, with a concentration in global Maternal and Child Health. Erica spent 17 years at the Demographic and Health Surveys, leading the communications and data use activities for the global project as well as in dozens of countries in Africa and Asia. She has particular interests in data visualization, data for decision making, and RCCE.

COVID-19 Vaccination Response & Knowledge Management

Facilitating knowledge exchange and sharing among key stakeholders in COVID-19 vaccine response and vaccination programming

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