Expanded programme on immunization

Strengthening Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFI) surveillance system in Viet Nam: root cause analysis technique

25-26 May 2016 - Ha Noi, Viet Nam


There were 20 participants including clinician, preventive health specialists, members of national AEFI review committees, national and regional immunization staff, staff from General Department of Preventive Medicine (GDPM) and National Regulatory Authority (NRA)


  • To conduct a workshop to give update on AEFI surveillance practices in Viet Nam with emphasis on serious AEFI investigation and causality assessment focusing root cause analysis; and
  • To update the AEFI surveillance and communication guidelines published by the Western Pacific Regional Office


The World Health Organization (WHO) standard training modules were modified for local requirement and case studies from Viet Nam were used for group works. The workshop was focused on following areas; consistent case investigation and causality assessment practices, analysis and best use of AEFI data for improving vaccine safety.

It is the first time, root cause analysis technique was introduced to use in AEFI case investigations. It focuses logical thinking of investigation of WHO recommended AEFI investigation practices. link text All participants felt that this approach will enhance the quality of AEFI case investigation and thereby provide a comprehensive investigation report which is the source document for AEFI causality assessment.

One third of the workshop time was spent on in-depth discussions pertaining to vaccine safety issues in the Viet Nam. Participants were much interested to learn lessons from other countries.

At the end, the Director General of GDPM and Immunization Team Leader (Acting) at WHO Country office were briefed the workshop outcome. All agreed the need of cascading training to subnational levels towards strengthening AEFI surveillance in the country, particularly case reporting, investigation and causality assessment.


This article also appears on the Global Immunization Newsletter (GIN), accessible from the link below.