Finding the right strategy to combat Malaria
14 December 2015
"The shortfall in malaria investment is daunting. It is important we find the right balance between funding countries with the highest burden, and those aspiring to malaria elimination," said Dr Sylvia Meek, Technical Director of Malaria Consortium, addressing an audience of EU parliamentarians, development specialists, international organisations and diplomats at a panel discussion in Brussels.
“If we are to meet the 2030 targets for malaria control and elimination, we need to scale up cost-effective interventions, such as seasonal malaria chemoprevention, and support innovative approaches such as mobile technology to reach the people at the end of the line," she added.
The event, hosted by Malaria Consortium in partnership with Parliament Magazine, coincided with the launch of the latest World Malaria Report. The report says that between 2000 and 2015, new malaria cases fell by 37% globally, and by 42% in Africa. During this same period, malaria mortality rates fell by 60% globally and by 66% in the African region, and the mortality rate among children under five fell by 65% worldwide and by 71% in Africa.
However, the disease still claimed 438,000 lives in 2015. Children under five are particularly vulnerable; in 2015 malaria killed an estimated 306,000 under-fives globally.
A number of challenges pose a serious threat to the control and future elimination of the disease: the growing resistance to antimalarial drugs and insecticides, a lack of progress being made in the highest burden countries, and the funding gap between current investment and what is actually needed to eliminate malaria by 2030, as estimated in the Global Technical Strategy for Malaria 2016–2030.
Discussions stressed the need for active EU involvement in maintaining momentum and support for malaria efforts.
To find out more about Malaria Consortium and the work they do to combat malaria, visit their website.