The Federal Government of Nigeria has announced that the malaria vaccine RTS, S/AS01 will be available in the country by April 2024.
Health Minister, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, speaking at a press conference to mark World Malaria Day on Tuesday, said Nigeria had requested the RTS, S/AS01 malaria vaccine during the round of requests for the vaccine. Tuesday’s application ends on April 18, 2023.
It comes after Nigeria reportedly failed to register the vaccine before the second round of registrations closed on January 17, 2023.
The World Health Organization (WHO), by 2021, has recommended the widespread use of the malaria vaccine RTS, S/AS01 (RTS, S) for children in sub-Saharan Africa and other regions with Plasmodium falciparum malaria transmission is moderate to high.
Meanwhile, the third application window to support Gavi is open until April 18. Dr. Osagie, who is represented by the permanent secretary of the ministry, Mamman Mamuda, said: “I would also like to inform you that the national program is working closely with the National Agency for Care Development. Primary Health Care and other stakeholders to access and deploy malaria vaccine (RTS, S) in phases subject to the availability of needed quantities.
“The country has also successfully submitted an application to Gavi for the allocation of the RTS, S vaccine. This vaccine will be available in the country by April 2024.”
World Malaria Day is celebrated on 25 April each year to emphasize the need for continued investment and to maintain a political commitment to malaria prevention and control.