Reducing Chicken Mortality with Thermostable Newcastle Disease Vaccine

Partners: Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines (GALVmed) and Hester Biosciences Limited
Location: India
Sector: Agriculture / Livestock
Dates of service: February 2016 – Present
IDinsight services: Multiple rapid evaluations including focus groups, process evaluations, and small n evaluations – to be followed by a randomized control trial
IDinsight contact: Dan Stein, Kate Sturla
Status: Active

The Problem

Newcastle disease (ND) is a highly contagious livestock disease in the developing world that kills 80-90% of infected poultry. Poultry are among one of the greatest assets for the rural poor, therefore reducing chicken mortality represents a critical step towards raising economic productivity and all other livelihood benefits for a smallholder household.

Evidence Needs

The Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicine (GALVmed) is an NGO that develops livestock-protecting vaccines and takes them to scale by working with manufacturers and distributors to build viable vaccine markets – for example, a typical Newcastle Disease (ND) vaccine is priced at $0.04 per dose [1].

In India, one of the leading commercial vaccine manufacturers – Hester Biosciences – developed an innovative ND thermostable vaccine. With funding support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, GALVmed and Hester Biosciences have partnered to distribute the ND thermostable vaccine to the smallholder farming sector in India’s rural areas by setting up a commercial distribution network.

IDinsight Service

As part of a learning partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, IDinsight will work closely with GALVmed and Hester Biosciences to conduct targeted evaluations of interventions aimed at generating increased demand for the innovative thermostable vaccine among backyard poultry farmers as well as strengthen the supply chain in rural areas.

So far, IDinsight has explored the use of mobile phone technology to spread awareness of the vaccine and used qualitative interviews to determine the relative effectiveness of different messages urging farmers to vaccinate their flocks.