The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that the world’s first vaccine against malaria will be introduced in three African countries – Ghana, Kenya and Malawi – starting in 2018.
The RTS,S vaccine (trade name Mosquirix) trains the immune system to attack the malaria parasite, which is spread by mosquito bites.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said the jab had the potential to save tens of thousands of lives.
They also said that this vaccine has been tested successfully in different well-funded clinical trials but has not been tested in the “real world” that has limited access to health care. That is why the WHO is running pilots in three countries to see if a full malaria vaccine programme could be started. It will also continue to assess the safety and effectiveness of the vaccination.
Ghana, Kenya and Malawi were chosen because they already run large programs to tackle malaria, including the use of bed nets, yet still have high numbers of cases. Each country will decide how to run the vaccination pilots, but high-risk areas are likely to be prioritized.
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