The World Health Organization (WHO) acknowledged the initiative of the Government of Malawi at the launch of the world’s first and only malaria vaccine through a part of a landmark pilot program. After the combined efforts of over 30 years Malawi has made the vaccine available to children in Africa. In the coming weeks, Ghana and Kenya will also introduce the vaccine. WHO coordinated the pilot program with a collective effort from health ministries of Malawi, Ghana, and Kenya and other partners including non-profit organizations, and GlaxoSmithKline, the vaccine developer.
The vaccine, known as RTS,S, is the only of its kind that has demonstrated positive results in significantly reducing malaria in children. Malaria, is one of the world’s leading killers, and has resulted in the death of 250000+ children in Africa. Children under the age of 5 are most affected due to its life threatening complications.