Nine new African countries to receive millions of malaria vaccines, GAVI says

Geneva, July 6 (BNA): The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) said today, Wednesday, that 12 countries in Africa will receive 18 million doses of the malaria vaccine over the next two years, expanding access to vaccines to nine new countries in the region.

Malaria remains one of the most deadly diseases on the continent, killing nearly half a million children under the age of five each year. In 2021, Africa was responsible for about 95% of global malaria cases and 96% of deaths, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

“At least 28 African countries have expressed interest in receiving the RTS,S malaria vaccine,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a media briefing, adding that a second malaria vaccine is under review for pre-qualification and, if successful, additional long-term supply could be made. short.

Ghana, Kenya and Malawi have been receiving the RTS,S vaccine since 2019 as part of a GAVI-funded pilot program and more than 1.7 million children in the countries have been vaccinated with it, GAVI, UNICEF and WHO said in a joint statement. .

The nine new countries set to receive the vaccine, developed by British pharmaceutical company GSK (GSK.L), are Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Liberia, Niger, Sierra Leone and Uganda.

The first doses of the RTS,S vaccine are expected to reach 12 African countries during the last quarter of 2023, allowing them to start rolling them out by early next year.

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