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July 24, 2019

Adequate funding and education is key to eliminating malaria

The only way we can combat the effects of malaria is by making sure funding is adequate, health education is continued and awareness of the problem is made clear to the population.

By GlobalData Healthcare

World Mosquito Day, which falls on 20 August, exists to create awareness about the state of malaria globally.

It marks the anniversary of the day Sir Ronald Ross, a British doctor, discovered that female mosquitoes were responsible for the transmission of malaria in 1897.

World Mosquito Day 2019

Since then, efforts have been made to put a stop to the disease, coming close to complete eradication in the 1950s. However, the funding needed to continue this progress has considerably declined, leading to the state of malaria today.

GlobalData epidemiologists reported that approximately 70% of malaria deaths are of children under five. Malaria is a huge financial burden on African countries, costing the African economy $12 billion every year, slowing the economic growth of these countries.

The only way we can combat the effects of malaria is by making sure funding is adequate, health education is continued and awareness of the problem is made clear to the population.

GlobalData epidemiologists have reported in-depth regarding malaria in six major markets (6MM: Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kenya, and Nigeria).

Figure 1 shows the estimated incidence of malaria and the number of cases eligible for chemoprevention in the 6MM for 2019 in those ages five and under. In Nigeria, Ghana, and the Democratic Republic of Congo, there are more incident cases of malaria than cases eligible for malarial chemoprevention.

This finding means a vast number of individuals in these countries are not receiving adequate prophylaxis against malaria, leading to unnecessarily high mortality rates, especially in this age group. By increasing the amount of chemoprevention in these areas, this could lead to a considerable decline in malaria cases, as demonstrated by Indonesia and India in Figure 1.

This is one major step towards reducing the mortality of malaria. With financial intervention, increased awareness, and proactivity, we can reduce the frequency of malaria transmission and be rid of malaria once and for all.

Figure 1: Estimated incidence of malaria versus cases eligible for seasonal malaria chemoprevention, 6MM, ages ≤5, 2019

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