On Monday, 24th April 2017, the World Health Organization unveiled their vaccine for malaria called, “Mosquirix”.
They stated that the injectable vaccine, which was developed by British drugmaker, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to protect children from Malaria will be piloted for babies and children in high-risk areas as part of real-life trials.
The three selected African countries where this will take place in 2018 are Ghana, Malawi and Kenya.
So far, the vaccine has proved partially effective in clinical trials and needs to be given in four-dose schedule but unfortunately, it is the first regulator approved vaccine against the mosquito-borne disease.
According to the WHO, they first want to see the results of the vaccine on-the-ground-testing in a pilot programme, this is why they chose these three African countries for the programme.
The WHO African Regional Director, Matshidiso Moeti, in a statement, said;
Information gathered in the pilot will help us make decisions on the wider use of this vaccine as the three pilot countries were announced.
Combined with existing malaria interventions, such a vaccine would have the potential to save tens of thousands of lives in Africa.
WHO said, Malawi, Kenya and Ghana were chosen for the pilot due to several factors, including having high rates of malaria as well as good malaria programmes, wide use of bed-nets, and well-functioning immunisation programmes.