Kenya has expanded its malaria vaccination program to 25 additional sub-counties in the lake endemic regions.
This is a significant step in the fight against malaria, which is one of the country's top ten causes of illness and death and a leading killer of children under the age of five.
The launch was presided over by the acting Director General of Health, Dr. Patrick Amoth, on behalf of the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Dr Susan Nakhumicha, in Vihiga County, Western Kenya, with the presence of Governor Wilber Otichilo.
Since introducing the malaria vaccine in 2019, close to 400,000 children have been vaccinated in the lake-endemic counties of Kisumu, Kakamega, Siaya, Homabay, Migori, Busia, Bungoma, and Vihiga.
Within these areas, there has been a substantial reduction in deadly severe malaria, a drop in child hospitalizations, and a decrease in child deaths.
Following the recommendation by WHO in October 2021, the Ministry of Health is now expanding malaria vaccination to 25 additional sub-counties within the lake endemic region, targeting an additional 133,000 infants annually.
The vaccine will be available in all the immunizing health facilities within the 51 sub-counties at no cost.
"The Ministry of Health urges all caregivers in the lake endemic regions to bring their children to receive this malaria vaccine where it is available and make sure to complete all the required four doses to get the best protection from the vaccine," stated the Ministry.©Standard Gazette, 2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s publisher is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Standard Gazette with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.