Sangwe Clovis Nchinjoh, MD, MPH, MS, a public health physician and researcher based in Cameroon was on June 6, 2023 honoured with the Sabin 2023 Rising Star Award by the Sabin Vaccine Institute in recognition of his achievements in improving immunization coverage in communities overlooked by traditional vaccination campaigns in Cameroon.

He was honoured alongside Dr. Thomas P. Monath who was recognized for his exemplary contributions to developing vaccines for emerging infectious diseases at a the Sabine Vaccine Institute in the United States of America.

“Accepting this award reminds me of the importance of resilience, planning, and dedication in achieving our goals. It also underscores the significance of never losing sight of the individuals and communities we serve” said Dr. Nchinjoh after recieving the about.

About the you young physician and researcher

For more than five years, Dr. Nchinjoh has been leading and coordinating high-impact multi-stakeholder programs. His work primarily focuses on generating evidence on the best approaches to identifying, mapping, and vaccinating zero-dose children in missed communities.

As an associate with the Clinton Health Access Initiative and founder of Rural Doctors, Dr. Nchinjoh conducts research and pilot interventions to generate evidence and support the Cameroon Ministry of Public Health to make data-driven decisions on vaccination equity and uptake in hard-to-reach and conflict settings. Based on the outcome of some of this work, he participated actively in developing a national catch-up vaccination policy guide and led the design of an evidence-based strategy for vaccinating zero-dose children in missed communities. In addition, he used these findings to inform the 2023-2028 National Vaccination Strategy and Cameroon’s Gavi full portfolio planning process.

Dr. Nchinjoh has fronted the mapping of zero-dose children and communities typically left out of traditional immunization programs in Cameroon. Using geospatial analysis and the World Health Organization’s Behavioral and Social Drivers framework, he investigated factors affecting immunization coverage among these populations in collaboration with colleagues at CHAI.

He leveraged the results to develop and test service delivery models in sample communities in all ten regions in Cameroon through a pilot intervention funded by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. More than 8,500 zero-dose children in 20 target health areas were reached. He recorded remarkable results in increasing vaccination demand by enhancing access to primary healthcare services in the hard-to-reach Manoka district, a remote island. It raised the district’s childhood vaccination coverage from 15.4% to 70% and improved access to maternal and child health care

Moreso, Rural Doctors, which he founded to improve access to primary health care services in rural areas, has adopted the Community-Oriented Primary Health Care (COPC) framework to develop community-centered integrated health service delivery packages for community health workers to generate childhood vaccination demand where there are no health facilities.

Dr. Nchinjoh earned his MD from the University of Buea, a Master’s in Public Health from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and recently completed a Master of Science degree in Health Care Management from Unicaf University.

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