April 24, 2024

Vaccinate children against malaria, British health adviser counsels Nigerians


Representative of Edo State Governor and Wife of the Governor, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki administering vaccine to an infant, during the flag-off of the 2018 Maternal New-born and Child Health Week (MNCHW) in Benin City, Edo State.

 Dr Ebere Anyachukwu, Health Adviser in  British  High Commission Abuja (BHC) has advised  Nigerian parents to vaccinate their children  against malaria once the vaccine rolls out in the country.

Anyachukwu gave the advice in an interview with Newsmen on Wednesday in Abuja, ahead of World Malaria Day scheduled for April 25.

He noted that the malaria vaccine combined, with other malaria preventive measures, was key to the fight against the disease.

According to him, against the backdrop of the misconception about the malaria vaccine, studies have shown that the vaccine is safe and effective.

He explained that the vaccine had been used in a number of countries and found to be safe and reliable.

“The vaccines approved by Word Health Organisation (WHO), is RTSS, which was developed by UK institutions like GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), while the R 21 was also developed by Oxford University.

“These developed vaccines marked one of the contributions of the UK to malaria interventions,” he said.

He added that though the malaria vaccines have been approved by the WHO but is not yet available in Nigeria.

“My advice will be, once the vaccines are rolled out, Nigerian parents should take advantage of this opportunity to vaccinate their children, not just against malaria, but against all the deadly diseases that affects children,

“Parents should also ensure that their children are vaccinated against the whole range of diseases.

“Studies have been done and reviews by WHO have shown that the vaccines are safe

“These vaccines are effective and safe. And particularly when used in combination with other malaria measures such as insecticide treated malaria bed nets, malaria drugs and seasonal malaria chemoprevention.

” It is imperative to get tested if your child has fever and treat promptly, also keep the environment clean to avoid mosquitoes breeding there, especially where there is stagnant water,” he added.