The Federal Government has said the RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine is expected to be in the country by April 2024.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, who spoke at a press briefing in commemoration of World Malaria Day on Tuesday said Nigeria has applied for the RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine in the third application widow for the vaccine which ended April 18, 2023.
WMD is celebrated on April 25 every year to highlight the need for continued investment and sustained political commitment to malaria prevention and control.
This is coming after The PUNCH exclusively reported that Nigeria failed to apply for the vaccine before the second application window closed on January 17, 2023.
The World Health Organisation, in 2021, recommended the widespread use of the RTS,S/AS01 (RTS,S) malaria vaccine among children in sub-Saharan Africa and other regions with moderate to high Plasmodium falciparum malaria transmission.
Meanwhile, a third window of applications for support from Gavi opened until April 18.
Dr Osagie, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Mamman Mamuda, said “Let me also inform you that the National Programme is working closely with the National Primary Health Care Development Agency and other stakeholders in accessing and deploying the malaria vaccine (RTS,S) in a phased fashion subject to availability of needed quantity.
“The country has also successfully submitted an application to Gavi for the RTS,S vaccine allocation. This is expected to be in-country by April 2024.”
Reports that despite efforts by the government and its partners to combat the effects of malaria, Nigeria accounts for 27 per cent of global malaria cases and 32 per cent of global malaria deaths