The United Nation Children’s Fund says Nigeria needs to spend the next two to three years building its immunisation infrastructure to enable the country to access and administer the World Health Organisation malaria vaccine.
Nigeria Representative of the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, Mr Peter Hawkins, said this in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Abuja; while reacting to the World Health Organisation’s recommendation for widespread administration of the malaria vaccine to children in Sub-Saharan Africa and regions burdened by the P. falciparum malaria parasite.
NAN reports that WHO’s recommendation came after a pilot test of the vaccine on about 800 thousand children in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi since 2019.
Mr Hawkins said for countries like Nigeria, the vaccine would greatly help to reduce the burden of the disease, as over 2,300 children under five years die every day from various diseases, including malaria.
He expressed optimism that the Government would decide to adopt the vaccine as part of the national malaria control strategy; noting that “each country will decide on whether they want to adopt the vaccine or not.”