“Over the past three years, malaria passed from first to third cause of infant mortality in Africa, Awa Coll-Seck, executive director of the Roll Back Malaria Partnership [RBM], said Tuesday in Paris,” Afrique en ligne reports. “‘At least 1.5 million children were saved from the disease in recent years, thanks to the successful implementation of national strategies, supported by the international community,’ she said,” in an interview with [the Pan African News Agency (PANA)], according to the news service.
Speaking at a national malaria forum in Nairobi on Monday, Charles Mbogo of the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) presented new evidence showing that malaria-causing mosquitos in Kenya have developed resistance to the most common chemicals derived from pyrethroids and DDT, which “could be a major blow to the countryâ€™s strategy to eradicate malaria by 2017,” Nigeria’s the Nation reports. “This new development comes at a time most parts of the country, especially the coastal region, have been recording a significant drop in malaria deaths,” the newspaper writes.
The Huffington Post profiles Philippe Douste-Blazy, U.N. under-secretary-general of Innovative Financing for Development and chair of UNITAID, a financing mechanism he conceived in 2004 to help provide medicines for HIV, tuberculosis and malaria in developing countries. The article discusses Douste-Blazy’s work and background, UNITAID, and other innovative financing schemes (Lines, 10/6).
This post in the Malaria Policy Center blog recaps a Tuesday Capitol Hill briefing, hosted by Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), co-chairs of the Senate Working Group on Malaria, “that highlighted research and development advancements by the U.S. military and U.S. academic institutions to develop the tools to eliminate malaria…
“Indoor spraying with the insecticide bendiocarb has dramatically decreased malaria transmission in many parts of Benin, new evidence that insecticides remain a potent weapon for fighting malaria in Africa despite the rapid rise of resistance to an entire class of mosquito-killing compounds,” researchers from Benin’s Entomologic Research Center in Cotonou…
“The focused attention that malaria has received by African governments and international organizations has had a major impact, with the rates of mortality coming down dramatically in the continent,” and the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) has helped lead this campaign, an IPP Media editorial states. However, “[a]s long as malaria continues to be Africa’s leading killer, little progress can be recorded in other endeavors, because of its insidious effect,” the editorial writes, noting that two percent of Africa’s GDP is lost annually because of the disease.
The African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) is “spearheading the fight against malaria” in Africa, bringing together 40 heads of state and “offer[ing] a compelling example of what is possible through co-operation, leadership, commitment, and sound management of national and international funds,” Tanzania President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete writes in a post on the Guardian’s “Poverty Matters Blog.” With the launch of the “groundbreaking” ALMA scorecard for accountability and action last week, leaders are now able “to measure our own performance against a set of key malaria metrics including national policies, financial controls, delivery of prevention and treatment commodities, and, most importantly, lives saved,” Kikwete writes.
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, “[a]long with our partners, both donors and implementers, [is] changing the story of scores of nations that were once devastated by three killer diseases — diseases which seemed invincible,” Global Fund Executive Director Michel Kazatchkine writes in a Huffington Post opinion piece, adding “we are now saving more than one million lives every year.”
New York Times 'Small Fixes' Section Examines Multiple Low-Cost Interventions For Global Health Problems
The New York Times on Monday published a special section, titled “Small Fixes,” containing several articles examining how low-cost innovations could help save thousands of lives. The articles examine issues as diverse as using circumcision to reduce the risk of HIV infection among men to a water-filtering straw that can provide one person with clean drinking water for up to one year. Other articles examine paper diagnostic tests for liver damage, using vinegar to diagnose precancerous cervical lesions, nectar poisons to kill disease-carrying mosquitos, a wetsuit-like compression suit that can save a woman experiencing hemorrhaging after giving birth, and scratch-off labels on medicines that allow a user to text message a code and discover whether the drugs are counterfeit, among others (Various authors, 9/26).
“The African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) has launched a scorecard to improve the fight against malaria on the African continent,” IRIN reports. “Updated quarterly, it provides information from each country on policies formulated, preventative measures initiated, money spent, lives saved and lost,” and “also tracks tracer indicators for maternal, newborn and child health,” the news service writes.