Day: March 16, 2021

Strengthening Capacity for National Hepatitis Planning in WHO Regions

DURATION   15 months

STARTING DATE  February 2021


PARTNER  World Health Organization( WHO)


WHO ran processes to develop costed National Strategic Plans (NSPs) or operational plans in Bangladesh, Nigeria, Sudan and Uganda, building on previous experiences in Nepal. Direct results from the project were: 

  • A fully prioritized new NSP was designed in Nigeria, including current cost-effectiveness and impact projections and a national task force for viral hepatitis.                                   
  • The cost of national diagnostic, treatment and vaccination costs for HBV and HCV was performed in Uganda, Bangladesh and Sudan. The final section of the NSPs now includes a section on financial implications.       


While national plans for viral hepatitis are now numerous, they are often unfocused, and most of them do not contain an adequate monitoring and evaluation log frame, precise targets, workforce needs, costing, budgeting and financing.

In August 2019, in Kathmandu, Nepal, the WHO Regional Office for the South East Asia Region (SEARO), in collaboration with the WHO Secretariat, conducted a workshop with 11 countries of the region to facilitate the development of an outline of national plans that would include quantifications for indicators, targets and costing as well as other resource needs. The workshop was successful and led to the development of planning tools.


The plans will be highly beneficial in supporting funding and donor engagement approaches. The project is particularly timely: Bangladesh, Nigeria, Sudan and Uganda will be able to use the updated NSP and costing and cost-effectiveness projections for building the next round of funding requests to the Global Fund, focusing on co-infection, triple elimination of vertical transmission and key populations.  

Bangladesh will be able to use the costed operational plans for upcoming negotiations of its next five-year health budget plan in 2023-2024. Each country’s extensive strategic and planning work has allowed for a renewed focus on a robust viral hepatitis response.  

The project has supported and accelerated the national response beyond the direct outcomes of the grant, notably by further supporting and highlighting the introduction and extension of timely birth dose in Uganda and Nigeria while developing and updating clinical guidelines and monitoring and evaluation frameworks, as well as trainings of healthcare workers, in Vanuatu, Sudan and Nigeria. 

Thanks to this project, Vanuatu included HIV and STIs as part of one consolidated National Action Plan, including triple elimination of vertical transmission. The country created a task force for viral hepatitis, HIV and STIs, which included national stakeholders and international technical partners.   

The WHO Regional Office and WHO HQ will continue to support Vanuatu as the COVID-19 response and epidemic interrupted some of the work in 2021 and early 2022 on the island. 

The project also catalysed the creation of the new WHO/ECHO-webinar series, “Dialogues for Viral Hepatitis Elimination”, which was designed as a platform to facilitate the country-country exchange to accelerate the viral hepatitis response. It will attract more than 36 WHO Member State participants, with a strong focus on national planning and costing.           

Read about our other grants.