Low-Cost Meningitis Vaccine Cuts Cases In African Countries, Data Show

Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger recorded the lowest number of meningitis A cases in an epidemic season this year after the MenAfriVac vaccine was introduced, data from the WHO show, the nonprofit that helped develop the shot, Meningitis Vaccine Project (MVP), said on Thursday, Reuters reports.

“Three of the four cases were in people from neighboring Togo who crossed the border for medical care, and the fourth was in a citizen of Burkina Faso who had not been vaccinated, MVP said. No confirmed cases were reported in Mali, while four cases were reported in Niger, all in unvaccinated people,” the news service writes (Kelland, 6/9). The data, which was published in the journal Health Affairs, “shows that introducing this vaccine in seven highly endemic African countries could save as much as US$300 million over a decade and prevent a million cases of disease,” according to an MVP release (.pdf) (6/9).