The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has put in place a monitoring mechanism to keep an eye on the rollout of the malaria vaccine in Ghana.
The FDA will be working in tandem with the Expanded Programme on Immunisation (EPI).
In Ghana, the vaccine, which was introduced on May 1, 2019 is being implemented in the Bono, Ahafo, Bono East, Volta, Oti and Central regions, according to service.
The FDA in a statement said these monitoring measures are to ensure that “any adverse events following [the] immunisation are promptly identified and reported to the FDA through its established safety monitoring system.”
The statement added that: “selected healthcare professionals have also been specifically trained by the FDA and the EPI and resourced by the Ghana Health Service to visit healthcare facilities in vaccination districts to monitor, detect and report safety issues that are suspected to have occurred after receiving the Mosquirix vaccine.”
If identified, the FDA assured that any side effects will be “promptly investigated.”
The vaccine, known as RTS, or Mosquirix, took GSK, formerly GlaxoSmithKline, more than 30 years to develop.
After initial tests, the vaccine was expanded to cover some 360,000 children in Malawi, Ghana and Kenya to see how well the vaccine works in real-world situations.
This is part of routine immunization programs run by African health ministries.
The vaccine works by triggering the immune system to defend against the first stages of the disease shortly after the malaria parasite enters the bloodstream.
Persons adversely affected by malaria vaccine to be compensated – GHS
The Ghana Health Service (GHS) had said that measures have been put in place to compensate persons who may be affected adversely after receiving the malaria vaccine.
According to the GHS, a committee has been set up to look into cases of negative health implications to users of the vaccine.
Speaking to Citi News, Director General of GHS, Dr Anthony Nsiah-Asare said the vaccine has been certified by the Food and Drugs Authority, and it’s therefore, safe for use.
He said the “Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI) committee” monitors closely the vaccination process and “looks at the causal effect and makes sure that we compensate and manage them when they have any problems.”
Find below the full statement from the FDA