Is It Too Early to Get Excited About a Malaria Vaccine?

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The war on the mosquito-spread disease has taken millions of lives. Could this be coming to an end?

In 2019, 400,000 people around the world died of malaria. But it may never reach that high a number again.

Early trials of a new vaccine have been shown to be 77 percent effective. This is not the first vaccine that has attempted to fight the deadly mosquito-transmitted disease. But it is the only one that has had this level of efficacy.

This news comes when COVID-19 vaccines dominate the international discussion. Some wealthier nations, most notably the United States, have prioritized vaccinating their own people first. This week, however, the Biden administration did announce it would be sharing its enormous stockpile of Astrazenca doses. Other countries, like China and Russia, have been shipping their vaccines around the world, though some have questioned their efficacy.

Many poorer countries have worried that they might wait years for their people to be vaccinated and be left with other countries’ lower-quality leftovers.

It also comes as scientists have begun thinking through the ways MRNA technology, which was used to develop the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, might be used to combat other diseases.

This week on Quick to Listen, we wanted to discuss the good news about the malaria vaccine, how this will affect Christian humanitarian work around the world, and what it looks like to be a good neighbor when it comes to vaccine distribution.

Our guest this week is Dan Irvine, the senior director of health and nutrition at World Vision International.

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Music by Sweeps

Quick to Listen is produced by Morgan Lee and Matt Linder

The transcript is edited by Yvonne Su and Bunmi Ishola

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