An Iterative Cyclic Algorithm for Designing Vaccine Distribution Networks in Low and Middle-Income Countries

  • Yuwen Yang
  • Jayant RajgopalEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes on Multidisciplinary Industrial Engineering book series (LNMUINEN)


The World Health Organization – Expanded Programme on Immunization (WHO-EPI) was developed to ensure that all children have access to common childhood vaccinations. Unfortunately, because of inefficient distribution networks and cost constraints, millions of children in many low and middle-income countries still go without being vaccinated. In this paper, we formulate a mathematical programming model for the design of a typical WHO-EPI network with the goal of minimizing costs while providing the opportunity for universal coverage. Since it is only possible to solve small versions of the model optimally, we describe an iterative heuristic that cycles between solving restrictions of the original problem and show that it can find very good solutions in reasonable time for larger problems that are not directly solvable.


Vaccines Network design Mixed integer programming Heuristics 



This work was partially supported by the National Science Foundation via Award No. CMII-1536430.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Industrial EngineeringUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA

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