07 October, 2021
Malaria has shadowed sub-Saharan Africa for over 2.5 million years, (Britannica). This life-threatening disease is caused by parasites that is transmitted to people through the bite of a female Anopheles mosquitoes. Despite malaria being a preventable disease, there were an estimated 229 million cases worldwide in 2019, (WHO). Of these cases, the majority are children. This disease kills over 400,000 children every year in the worst affected areas of Africa. There have been ongoing attempts to create a malaria vaccination for children and thanks to the research and development of vaccinations and testing for the disease, The WHO have recommended the widespread use of RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine amongst children in regions with moderate to high P. falciparum malaria transmissions.
Pilot schemes were based in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi and saved the lives of thousands of children who otherwise would have become another victim of malaria. After 30 years of investigations, testing and development, this vaccine is now ready for widespread distribution to the worst affected areas. After the distribution of the pilot schemes, the key findings were as follows:
- Feasible to deliver
- Reaching the unreached
- Strong safety profile
- No negative impact on uptake of bed nets, other childhood vaccinations, or health seeking behaviour for febrile illness
- High impact in real-life childhood vaccination settings
- Highly cost-effective
This distribution of the RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine is a huge step for protecting the lives of those most at risk. With this advancement of this vaccine, comes a focus on testing for the disease. As powerful and effective as vaccines are, it is still of the upmost importance to test for diseases or infections if you feel unwell or symptomatic. By testing frequently if you are a high risk group, it reduces the risk of serious illness or in more severe cases, death.
Fortress Diagnostics offer both Rapid Diagnostic and Immunoassay ELISA tests for malaria. By conducting testing for malaria, it will give sound mind and help reduce severe cases. For more information click here for the Malaria Immunoassays ELISA testing or here for the Malaria Rapid Diagnostic tests. If you wish to speak to a member of our team please email firstname.lastname@example.org