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Blogs Address World Malaria Day

The following is a summary of blog posts addressing World Malaria Day, observed annually on April 25.

  • Caroline Espinosa, U.S. Global Leadership Coalition blog: “The combined efforts by governments, NGOs, and business all around the world have led to more than a 25 percent drop in malaria mortality rates,” Espinosa, deputy communications director at the coalition writes. “At the forefront of the United States’ efforts is its President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI),” she notes, adding, “Launched in 2005, PMI has been enormously effective in helping protect people from the effects of malaria in Africa by expanding coverage of highly effective malaria prevention and treatment measures to the most vulnerable populations: pregnant women and children under five years of age” (4/25).
  • Frederick Hartman, Management Sciences For Health’s (MSH) “Global Health Impact” blog: “Despite decades of effort addressing malaria and reductions in disease and death rates over the past 10 years, malaria remains a major killer around the globe — especially in Africa,” Hartman, MSH’s global technical lead for communicable diseases and epidemic preparedness, writes. “All our gains could be wiped out in a few years if we do not maintain our vigilance, invest in the future, and support active malaria detection and treatment interventions in both health facilities and communities,” he continues (4/24).
  • Krista Hoff, PLOS Community Blog: “Today, many countries worst affected by malaria transmission are on track to meet the 2015 World Health Assembly target of reducing incidence rates by more than 75 percent, but continued research and support are vital to keeping this momentum,” Hoff, publications manager for PLOS, writes. “Papers published recently in PLOS ONE highlight some of the work being done around the world to reach this goal and sustain the progress that has been made,” she continues and describes the papers (4/25).
  • Chris LaTondrese, USAID’s “IMPACTblog“: LaTondrese, of USAID’s Center for Faith Based and Community Initiatives, highlights efforts by Anglican Bishop Dinis Sengulane, who has presided over Mozambique’s Lebombo Diocese since 1976, to defeat malaria in his country. “In 2006 the Bishop helped launch a nationwide campaign to end malaria called PIRCOM (Programa Inter Religioso Contra a Malaria) alongside leaders from Christian, Muslim and Baha’i faith backgrounds,” he notes, adding, “To date PIRCOM has trained over 27,000 religious leaders and reached nearly two million congregants with basic malaria education, made possible through funding from the President’s Malaria Initiative” (4/25).
  • Tom Paulson, Humanosphere: On World Malaria Day, “there’s lots of stories out there celebrating the progress we’ve made so far — with stories about how some countries are close to completely eliminating malaria, how we are now using cell phones to assist in the fight or how a malaria vaccine could be just around the corner. But there are also the stories about rising resistance to malaria drugs, about how we aren’t really that close to finding a vaccine and about malaria spreading into new corners of the world,” Paulson, a development blogger, writes. He includes quotes from Robert Newman, director of the global malaria program at the WHO, who said, “Malaria control over the past decade has been like compressing a spring. If we let the pressure off, the disease will spring back … and be even worse” (4/25).
  • Christina Synowiec, Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI) blog: “While mortality [from malaria] has decreased by a quarter in the last decade due to increased use of insecticide-treated bed nets and artemisinin-based combination therapies, most people at risk still do not have access to these products,” Synowiec, an analyst with the Results for Development (R4D) Institute, writes. “With our colleagues at the University of Toronto, we at CHMI have been looking closely at malaria programs on our digital platform to discover what practices are emerging at the grassroots and global level to eradicate this stubborn disease and save millions of lives,” she states and describes some of the data (4/23).