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Despite Progress In Malaria Vaccine Development, Funding Remains Potential 'Stumbling Block'

In this Guardian opinion piece, the newspaper’s health editor, Sarah Boseley, responds to the positive results of a large-scale clinical trial of an experimental malaria vaccine reported on Tuesday and recaps other strides made against the disease in recent years, writing that “there is a way to go yet, with more results from the trial to come, and many uncertainties, including how much this vaccine will cost and who will be persuaded to pay.”

“In three years’ time, when the final results are in and the WHO has recommended its use, the scientists may hit the biggest stumbling block of all: money to roll it out,” she writes, adding, “Donors will want to figure out whether bednets or artemisinin drugs are a better investment than a vaccine that will reduce the number of malaria cases but not stop the disease in its tracks. Price will be a critical factor in these considerations” (10/18).