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Malawi Begins Pilot Program To Immunize Children With GSK/PATH Malaria Vaccine; Kenya, Ghana Set To Roll Out Similar Programs

Associated Press: U.N.: Malawi is 1st nation to use malaria vaccine to help kids
“The World Health Organization says Malawi has become the first country to begin immunizing children against malaria, using the only licensed vaccine to protect against the mosquito-spread disease. Although the vaccine only protects about one-third of children who are immunized, those who get the shots are likely to have less severe cases of malaria. The parasitic disease kills about 435,000 people every year, the majority of them children under 5 in Africa…” (Cheng, 4/23).

BBC News: Innovative child malaria vaccine to be tested in Malawi
“…Malawi is the first of three countries chosen for the pilot to roll out the vaccine. It aims to immunize 120,000 children aged two years and below. The other two countries, Ghana and Kenya, will introduce the vaccine in the coming weeks. The three countries were picked because they already run large programs to tackle malaria, including the use of bed nets, yet still have high numbers of cases…” (4/23).

Business Day: Groundbreaking malaria vaccine project gets under way in Malawi
“…Trade-named Mosquirix, the drug has been developed by British pharmaceutical firm GlaxoSmithKline in partnership with the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative. It passed previous scientific testing — including five years of clinical trials on 15,000 people in seven countries — and was approved for the pilot program in 2015…” (4/23).

Additional coverage of the malaria vaccine pilot program is available from Agence France-Presse, Al Jazeera, and Deutsche Welle.