Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Ghana, Kenya and Malawi to Pilot Malaria Vaccine

Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Ghana, Kenya and Malawi to Pilot Malaria Vaccine

Article excerpt

Children in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi will receive the world's first malaria vaccine as part of a WHO-coordinated pilot implementation programme that starts in 2018.

The RTS,S malaria vaccine has completed clinical trials, but has not yet been tested as part of a national vaccine programme--i.e. in a real-world setting.

The pilots will assess three things: the feasibility of delivering the required our doses of RTS,S to children starting at about 5 months of age, the vaccine's potential role for reducing childhood deaths, and its safety in the context of routine use.

The RTS,S vaccine, which is injectable, was developed to protect young children from the most deadly form of malaria caused by Plasmodium falciparum.

The vaccine will be assessed in the pilot programme as a complementary intervention that could be included in the core package of WHO-recommended measures for malaria prevention.

Africa bears the greatest burden of malaria worldwide. Global efforts in the last 15 years have led to a 62% reduction in malaria deaths between 2000 and 2015, but an estimated 212 million cases of malaria occurred and 429 000 people died of the disease in 2015, most of them young children in Africa. …

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