Ghana is set to test new malaria vaccine

Ghana is set to test new malaria vaccine

Ghana and two other African nations will be the first to test what could be the world’s first malaria vaccine.

Ghana joins Kenya and Malawi as test sites for the MosquirixTM vaccine, which acts against Plasmodium falciparum, the most deadly malaria parasite globally, and the most prevalent in Africa.

According to officials, the test will evaluate the feasibility of delivering the required four doses of the vaccine, the vaccine’s impact and whether the vaccine is safe for routine use.

The vaccine is being considered as a complementary malaria control tool in Ghana that could potentially be added to the core package of proven malaria preventive, diagnostic and treatments interventions such as bed nets and indoor spraying with insecticides.

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Kezia Malm, Manager of the National Malaria Control Program (NMCP), said Ghana was selected for the trial because of its high malaria burden and well-functioning malaria and immunization programs.

In 2017, Ghana recorded approximately 10.2 million suspected malaria cases in a population of some 30 million people.

Badu Sarkodie, Director of Public health at the Ghana Health service is now calling for concerted efforts by the citizens in the fight against malaria.

“The idea is not just to put malaria down but to end it forever,” he said at an outreach service to mark World Malaria Day.

Ghana aims to reduce malaria morbidity and mortality by 75 percent by the year 2020.  Its ultimate goal is to achieve and sustain near-zero malaria deaths and malaria-free nation.

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