Many countries are expanding Covid-19 vaccine booster programs or shortening the gap between shots as governments scramble to shore up protection against the new Omicron variant which emerged during November in southern Africa and Hong Kong.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who has steered the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, is on course to serve a second five-year term as head of the World Health Organization (WHO) after being the only candidate nominated by 28 countries.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Oct. 6 the only approved vaccine against malaria should be widely given to African children, potentially marking a major advance against a disease that kills hundreds of thousands of people annually.

Johnson & Johnson announced that the company’s Imbokodo Phase IIb trial in HIV failed to hit the primary endpoint. The study evaluated J&J’s investigational HIV vaccine regimen in young women in sub-Saharan Africa at high risk of acquiring HIV.

BioNTech SE on July 26 announced the launch of the company’s Malaria project, which aims to develop a well-tolerated and highly effective Malaria vaccine and implement sustainable vaccine supply solutions on the African continent.

Britain said on July 7 the country would provide genomic sequencing support to Brazil, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria and Pakistan to help identify, assess and track new variants of the novel coronavirus.

The White House laid out a plan to share 55 million U.S. Covid-19 vaccine doses globally, with roughly 75 percent of the doses allocated to Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and Africa through the COVAX international vaccine-sharing program.

COVAX will deliver 237 million doses of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 shot to 142 countries by the end of May as the World Health Organization-backed program steps up the global roll-out of its vaccine supplies.

The World Health Organization asked six African countries to be alert for possible Ebola infections, as Guinea on Feb. 16 reported new cases and Democratic Republic of Congo said its new infections were a resurgence of a previous outbreak.

The World Health Organization listed AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use, widening access in the developing world, while sources said the EU is in talks with Moderna on buying more vaccines.