By Alex Osei-Boateng ACCRA, (Xinhua)
-- Ghana is readying itself
for the smooth pilot of the world’s first malaria
vaccine later in the year, officials said here on
and Malawi will be the first African countries to try
out the MosquirixTM vaccine, which acts against
Plasmodium falciparum, the most deadly malaria parasite
globally, and the most prevalent in Africa.
Specifically, the pilot implementation program will
evaluate the feasibility of delivering the required four
doses of the vaccine, impact of the vaccine on lives
saved, and the safety of the vaccine in the context of
is being considered as a complementary malaria control
tool in Ghana that could potentially be added to and not
replace the core package of proven malaria preventive,
diagnostic and treatment interventions such as bed nets
and indoor spraying with insecticides.
Manager of the National Malaria Control Program (NMCP),
said Ghana was selected for the trial because of its
high malaria burden and well-functioning malaria and
Malaria is a
dreaded disease which kills more children than any other
disease and is the leading cause of miscarriage and
stillbirths in pregnant women in Ghana.
malaria occurs every year with varying transmission
intensity throughout the year, affecting all ages, with
children under-five and pregnant women being the most
Ghana recorded approximately 10.2 million suspected
malaria cases in the out-patient department (OPD) in a
population of some 30 million people, representing a 23
percent decrease over OPD malaria cases reported in
deaths also reduced from 1,264 in 2016 to 599 in 2017,
representing a decrease of 52.6 percent.
the figure from 2016 represents an improvement over that
of 2015, we recognize that a lot of work has to be done
in reducing prevalence of malaria to the barest
minimum,” Ghanaian President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
said at a Malaria Summit in London recently.
Sarkodie, Director of Public Health at the Ghana Health
Service, has called for the support of the citizenry in
the fight against malaria, as Ghana joined the rest of
the world to observe World Malaria Day (WMD).
Ghana had the potential to eliminate malaria, and called
for the maximum support and collaboration of
stakeholders and individuals to reach that goal.
“The idea is
not just to put malaria down but to end it forever,” he
said at an outreach service to mark the WMD at Ashaiman,
a cosmopolitan community near the port city of Tema, 38
km east of the national capital.
The WMD is
an occasion to highlight the need for continued
investment and sustained political commitment to malaria
prevention and control.
set the target to reduce malaria morbidity and mortality
by 75 percent by the year 2020.
goal, through the national strategic plan for malaria
control, is to achieve and sustain near-zero malaria
deaths and ultimately a malaria-free nation.
interventions of this plan include integrated vector
management; malaria case management, seasonal malaria
chemoprevention; integrated support systems;
surveillance; and the strengthening of health systems.
Malm said if
stakeholders lost focus, Ghana risked losing giant
strides made in the fight against malaria over the past
decades, calling on all to put in more efforts to beat