Malaria vaccine is safe: Dr Aceng assures parliament ahead of mass vaccinations starting next year

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Health Minister Dr Jane Ruth Acheng;

By Mary Asujo

The Minister for Health, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng, has told parliament that there is no vaccine that enters Uganda and is not certified by World Health organization.

“No vaccine that is not WHO-certified enters Uganda. There is no medicine in this world which does not have side effects including panadol,” Dr Aceng responded.

Her response follows Amuria district woman MP, Suzan Amero who was seeking assurance from the minister on the certification and effectiveness of vaccines in Uganda.

This was during a sitting presided over by the Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa on Thursday at parliament.

In plenary last week, State Minister of health for General Duties, Ms Margaret Muhanga told parliament that the ministry intends to vaccinate against malaria in 2023 in a bid to eliminate the disease from Uganda. She said this while responding to a matter of national importance raised by Kilak South County MP, Gilbert Olanya on the high prevalence of malaria in Acholi sub-region.

Olanya said that a report by the Malaria Indicator Survey revealed that 360 children below 15 years died of malaria in July 2022.

He called on government to take the issue of malaria seriously citing the death of 18 children to the disease in Amuru district in the month of July.

Olanya added that malaria prevalence in Acholi greatly declined between 2010 and 2013 when government was carrying out indoor residual spraying but later became prevalent when government stopped the programme.

“The spraying of homes proved to be effective at the time it was being carried out. I pray that government considers resuming indoor residual spraying to reduce the rate of malaria in Acholi,” Olanya said.

Muhanga said the Ministry of Health had raised a red flag on the raising cases of malaria deaths in May 2022 noting that the highest prevalence was recorded in Busoga.

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