Salesforce Offers Cloud Management System for COVID-19 Vaccine Roll-Out

Salesforce rolls out Vaccine Cloud

Salesforce released Vaccine Cloud, joining Google and ServiceNow in providing public health agencies, healthcare providers and employers new vaccine management tools against COVD-19.

ServiceNow released its own tool set, Vaccine Administration Management, on Tuesday. They named the national government of Scotland and the state of North Carolina as part of their customer base.

MTX Group, a Salesforce partner built, GetVaxChi, the city of Chicago’s vaccine management platform on Salesforce. Vaccine Cloud lets people sign up for appointments, and healthcare agencies and providers can send reminders and QR code check-ins for appointments. The system also manages data from inventory management, through to distribution, analytics and data visualisation at scale. It also manages follow-up communications with patients after they are administered their vaccine.

Vaccine Cloud has been deployed over Salesforce Work.com, and it builds on contact tracing tools that Salesforce introduced earlier this year. These tools caught on among state government users after Rhode Island collaborated with Salesforce to connect contact tracing with COVID-19 testing data. The MTX Group’s system, which is currently available, can also be used to manage outbreaks of other diseases (seasonal flu, measles, mumps, etc.). The system also interfaces with patients’ electronic medical records.

At present there are 35 federal, state and local US agencies that are using Vaccine Cloud, along with dozens more healthcare providers, educational institutions, and nonprofits.

Salesforce chief medical officer Ashwini Zenooz M.D. said that many of the Vaccine Cloud customers are new to Salesforce. However, Salesforce isn’t likely to be using Vaccine Cloud as a lead-generation strategy to gain new customers, according to Constellation Research founder R “Ray” Wang.

With the complexities surrounding COVID-19 vaccinations (Pfizer’s and Moderna’s versions need two shots), along with differing privacy rules around patient data handling and certification for patients who have already have had their immunisations, Salesforce and ServiceNow have been built to take them on.

Wang said, “A lot of people are looking for help organizing that information, getting it together. It’s a goodwill gesture to be able to do something and move forward.”

According to Zenooz, the mass COVID-19 vaccination programme is perhaps the largest public health administration effort in the history of the U.S. She added that it isn’t only the supply chain tracking issues and matching doses to each patient that comes into play, but also managing consent. For example some care home residents or patients may not be able to consent themselves, therefore relatives would need to be tracked down for confirmation.

“When you start adding these additional vaccines, of different doses, calling back patients for the right vaccine at the right dose — and now we’re seeing clinical trials to see if we potentially need boosters for additional strains — it’s quite complex,” Zenooz said. “Technology has the ability to simplify this for the people on the front lines.”

Simplus, Accenture and Mphasis also join in

MTX Group also partnered with Google Cloud in order to build vaccine distribution systems for authorities. The Salesforce version uses components from Service Cloud, Health Cloud, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and Mulesoft amongst other, according to Tyler Prince (executive VP of worldwide alliances and channels at Salesforce). Mphasis, Simplus, and Accenture are also working to deploy COVID-19 vaccine management tools on Salesforce.  

Prince Said, “For government agencies and healthcare providers, there are pretty significant complexities, and each state or municipality may be thinking a little bit differently how they will roll it out. Our partners understand Salesforce, they have years of Salesforce capabilities, and they also bring domain expertise working with governmental agencies.”

With this vaccine distribution system, Salesforce can expand its footprint among government users, but a bigger results could be the commercial adoption, according to Wang. While employers determine the best way to start reopening offices and healthcare providers struggle with collating the data involved in vaccinations, Salesforce could become a highly attractive option for technology buyers. Twilio, finds itself among other CX technology vendors that offer contact tracing technologies.

Earlier this year Salesforce released tools to help with the reopening process, including tools for employee wellness, content distribution for COVID-19 safety and social distancing policies, as well as shift management. These tools are hosted by Salesforce on a relaunched Work.com. The site had been long-dormant and previously used to host employee-rewards tools in the early 2010’s. Wang went on to say that employers needs a way to protect employee health information while keeping their offices safe.

“[Salesforce CEO Marc] Benioff doesn’t want to build a Work.com that’s going after HR, but this is going after some of the big issues that companies face — what they will need to get back to work,” Wang said.

International Vaccinations to be sped up by Gavi partnership

Salesforce will also be collaborating with Gavi, a non profit committed to distributing vaccines to low-income countries. Their goal is to facilitate manufacturing, distribution, and price negotiation of two billion COVID-19 vaccination doses to 190 countries by the end of the year.

This Salesforce partnership involves hosting Gavi’s COVID-19 country portal. Here government-level users can exchange data, manage the logistics of vaccine distribution and prioritise need. Gavi is already an existing Salesforce customer, but the company will supply some of their services pro bono for this project.

According to David Ragones, senior VP and general manager of Salesforce Nonprofit Cloud, Gavi and groups like them are working to overcome disparities such as 10% of the world’s population consuming 90% of pharmaceuticals produced internationally.

“This simply cannot be the case with this global pandemic,” Ragones said. “If we’re going to get a handle on the pandemic and get beyond it, we need to make sure that all of the world’s population has access to the vaccine.”

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