ETVAX Vaccine Study Holds Successful Dissemination Meetings in Five Communities

The Enterotoxigenic Escherichia Coli Vaccine (ETVAX) dissemination meeting was held in Farafenni, Ngayen Sanjal, Kerewan, Noo Kunda and Soma to share the preliminary findings and outcomes of the study which included approximately 5,000 children from communities in North Bank, Lower River, and Central River regions of The Gambia. The study focused on evaluating the safety and effectiveness of the ETVAX vaccine in preventing diarrhoea caused by Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) in children aged 6 -18 Months in The Gambia.
ETVAX dissemination meeting group picture

In collaboration with parents, community leaders, local government authorities and staff of Medical Research Council The Gambia at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (MRCG at LSHTM), the activity presented an opportunity to engage communities on the impact of the research.

Dr Jahangir Hossain, Principal investigator of the ETVAX Study, expressed deep gratitude to all those present and acknowledged the importance of the ETVAX project. He stated, “The preliminary analysis indicates that the ETVAX vaccine has been shown as safe and more outcomes of the study will be disseminated in future through stakeholders and Ministry of Health of The Gambia. We hope that the findings hold significant promise in improving the lives of children not only in The Gambia but also worldwide, where diarrhoeal diseases continue to pose a major health challenge.”

The Deputy Governor of the North Bank Region, His Excellency Dembo Sanneh while addressing the gathering, highlighted the health benefits of MRCG research in The Gambia, noting that children, families, and communities at large have greater chances of healthier lives when they participate in MRCG clinical research projects.”

Mr Alagie Secka, Principal Nursing Officer of Farafenni General Hospital spoke on the impact of the ETVAX Vaccine study. “The data at the Farafenni Hospital shows a remarkable decrease in the number of children dying from diarrhoea. Before coming to this gathering, I looked at the statistics and learned that in 2021, before the ETVAX project’s participant recruitment phase, the death rate was above 200 but this has drastically reduced to below 50.”

The head of the Chiefs in Farafenni, Alkali Bakary Dibba addressed the audience, emphasizing the role of traditional leaders in promoting community health and applauded the collaborative efforts of MRCG.

The ETVAX Nurse Coordinator, Nyima Camara thanked communities and stakeholders, including parents, community members, leaders, healthcare professionals, and research collaborators acknowledging their role as crucial to the successful completion of the project.

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