WHO Approves World’s First Vaccine For Malaria

(Photo by LOUISA GOULIAMAKI/AFP via Getty Images)

Dylan Housman Healthcare Reporter
Font Size:

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced Wednesday it is recommending the use of the world’s first ever malaria vaccine.

The RTS,S vaccine recommendation is based on a pilot program run since 2019 in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi for more than 800,000 children, the WHO said in a release. The vaccine has a positive safety profile and resulted in a 30% decrease in severe deadly malaria, even in areas with other interventions such as insecticide-treated mosquito nets and high quality healthcare access.

“This is a historic moment. The long-awaited malaria vaccine for children is a breakthrough for science, child health and malaria control,” said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “Using this vaccine on top of existing tools to prevent malaria could save tens of thousands of young lives each year.”

Malaria kills more than 500,000 people in sub-Saharan Africa each year, about half of which are children under the age of five. The WHO recommends that the new vaccine be administered in a series of four doses to children under five years of age. (RELATED: WHO Investigator Admits Team Had To Compromise With Communist China To Include Lab Leak In Original COVID-19 Origin Report)

“For centuries, malaria has stalked sub-Saharan Africa, causing immense personal suffering,” said WHO Regional Director for Africa, Dr. Matshidiso Moeti. “We have long hoped for an effective malaria vaccine and now for the first time ever, we have such a vaccine recommended for widespread use. Today’s recommendation offers a glimmer of hope for the continent which shoulders the heaviest burden of the disease and we expect many more African children to be protected from malaria and grow into healthy adults.”