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Uganda Faces Challenges Of Malaria, Corruption

Writing in the GlobalPost’s “Pulse” blog, GlobalPost correspondent Sasha Chavkin examines “the heavy toll taken on Ugandan children’s health by two pernicious, but very different, sorts of parasites.” She continues, “The first is the Plasmodium parasite, the mosquito-borne microorganism that causes malaria. The second are corrupt government officials, whose theft of international aid prompted foreign donors to withdraw” a significant amount of aid to the country. Chavkin states, “Malaria is Uganda’s leading cause of illness and mortality, according to the [USAID], and young children are among the most likely to die from infections.” She discusses how “Uganda was one of the initial countries targeted in the 2005 launch of George W. Bush’s President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI),” and she notes, “PMI says it is maintaining its support: in large part because it works primarily with [non-governmental organizations (NGOs)] to deliver services, rather than government programs.” Chavkin concludes, “Over the next two weeks, I’ll be meeting with health officials and experts, and traveling to rural clinics and communities to examine the front lines of Uganda’s battle against child malaria” (7/25).