Dr. Christian Auer, project collaborator and a member of the Swiss TPH core team, visited the Volta region of Ghana from 24 to 25 November 2022 to interview health officers, healthcare workers and community volunteers that were involved in the introduction of the RTS,S. This was to afford the Swiss TPH which is the lead agent of work package 5 that has as focus stakeholder analysis, an opportunity to understand the health system issues regarding the introduction of the RTS,S malaria vaccine in Ghana. This site visit was facilitated by the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in Ho.

Dr. Auer was assisted by two members of the Ghana core team of SAVING namely Fidelis Anumu and Evelyn Acquah to interview Dr. Senanu Kwesi Djokoto and Mr Emmanuel Bonsu who are the Volta Regional Director of Health Services and the Regional EPI Coordinator respectively. A research assistant, Elsie Ewoenam Mottey, from UHAS also assisted in carrying out the other interviews in the field.

Those who were interviewed were selected based on the relevance of the role they played in the introduction of the RTS,S malaria vaccine and also based on advice from the SAVING leadership. Apart from the two key people mentioned above, interviewed were three district EPI coordinators (Ketu South, Central Tongu and Anloga), health workers in two health facilities delivering malaria vaccine (Adidome District Hospital and Atorkor CHPS: Community-based Health Planning Services) and two community health volunteers in a community at Atorkor. The interview questions were centered around how the RTS,S vaccine was introduced.

Permission for the interviews was granted by the director of the Volta regional health directorate and the interviews were conducted face-to-face. Responses to the questions were not tape recorded but notes were taken as answers were being produced.

The general perception after the visit was that the implementation of RTS,S went well and that most challenges could be addressed, at least to a certain degree.