OIA response: MMR vaccine stock

Response to a request for information on MMR stocks.

11 December 2019

[name and contact details redacted]

Dear [name redacted]

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION:

Thank you for your request for official information, received on 13 November, requesting the following information under the Official Information Act (1982):

  1. How many doses of MMR vaccine were ordered for 2017?
  2. How many doses of MMR vaccine were ordered in 2018?
  3. What was the estimate for the required number of MMR doses per month for 2017?
  4. What was the estimate for the required number of MMR doses per month for 2018?
  5. What was the estimate for the required number of MMR doses per month for 2019 (estimate prior to the March outbreak)?
  6. If there is a difference in estimated amount between 2018 and 2019 explain how the difference was calculated.

a. What increase or decrease was due to birth rate projections?
b. What increase or decrease was due to global risk?
c. Please break out and identify other factors which may have changed the amount ordered?

PHARMAC Response

PHARMAC monitors vaccine usage and stock levels at the National and Regional Vaccines Stores and works to ensure a suitable safety buffer of stock is maintained to ensure continuity of supply.  Relevant factors include supply lead times of at least 6 – 9 months, storage capacity, risk of product expiry, risk of outbreaks, changes in vaccination take-up, demographic changes and seasonal factors.  

In response to your specific questions:

1. How many doses of MMR vaccine were ordered for 2017?

  • 154,000 doses were ordered in 2017.

2. How many doses of MMR vaccine were ordered in 2018?

  • 156,000 doses were ordered in 2018.

3. What was the estimate for the required number of MMR doses per month for 2017?

  • Monthly usage was forecast at 12,839 as at January 2017.

4. What was the estimate for the required number of MMR doses per month for 2018?

  • Monthly usage was forecast at 12,115 as at January 2018.

5. What was the estimate for the required number of MMR doses per month for 2019 (estimate prior to the March outbreak)?

  • Monthly usage was forecast at 12,557 as at January 2019.

6. If there is a difference in estimated amount between 2018 and 2019 explain how the difference was calculated.

  • While estimates are not recorded or held, a minor change in usage trends was taken into account.

i. What increase or decrease was due to birth rate projections?

  • No significant birth rate change was factored in.

ii. What increase or decrease was due to global risk?

  • Changes in global risk is not explicitly factored in as it is not possible to predict with any certainty whether any additional vaccine would be required in a given year.

iii. Please break out and identify other factors which may have changed the amount ordered?

  • There were no other factors which impacted on the monthly forecast amounts for 2018 and 2019.

We trust that this information answers your queries.  If you would like to talk with Lisa Williams, our director of operations, about the process for ordering vaccines please contact Jane Wright, our senior communications advisor on 021863342.

We are making our information more freely available, so we will now publish selected OIA responses (excluding personal details) on our website.  Please get in touch with us if you have any questions about this.

Yours sincerely

Alison Hill
Director, Engagement and Implementatio