News / Health

Malaria Deaths Drop Drastically; WHO Predicts More Success

Malaria Deaths Drop Drastically; WHO Predicts More Successi
X
December 14, 2013 4:10 AM
The global effort to curb malaria is succeeding phenomenally, according to the latest report from the World Health Organization. More than 3 million lives have been saved so far this century with better prevention and better medicines. As VOA's Carol Pearson reports, the organization expects even more success.
Carol Pearson
The global effort to curb malaria is succeeding phenomenally, according to the latest report from the World Health Organization. More than three million lives have been saved so far this century with better prevention and better medicines. The organization expects even more success.

Global efforts to end malaria and the human suffering it causes have made huge strides since 2000. Public and private donors have targeted hard hit countries by funding programs like the one in Kenya.

The World Health Organization's latest report on malaria says three million lives, mostly those of children, have been spared. The death rate has been cut by nearly half.

Dr. Robert Newman, who heads the organization's global malaria program, said, "There’s been a large increase over the last 12 years in financing for malaria control efforts, and that has purchased lifesaving commodities like long-lasting insecticide treated bed nets, insecticides for indoor spraying, diagnostic tests, especially rapid diagnostic tests, and anti-malarial medicines.”

Malaria mortality rates, 2000 - 2012Malaria mortality rates, 2000 - 2012
x
Malaria mortality rates, 2000 - 2012
Malaria mortality rates, 2000 - 2012
Malaria is a plague in more than 100 countries, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Asia.

Dr. Newman expects the number of deaths from malaria to drop even more over the next 10 years.

"I think we are going to see an incredible decade of success ahead, especially as people realize that this is a proven public health investment and that we have millions of more lives that can be saved over the next 10 years," he said.

Malaria mortality rates, by age groups, 2000-2012Malaria mortality rates, by age groups, 2000-2012
x
Malaria mortality rates, by age groups, 2000-2012
Malaria mortality rates, by age groups, 2000-2012
Newman predicts a vaccine will be ready within 20 years and cut the number of cases by 75 percent.

Experts say without malaria, productivity will increase. People will be better able to provide food for their families, and they can put the money they normally use to buy anti-malarial drugs toward other uses. Countries can focus on other health needs.

Dr. Joy Phumaphi, who works with the African Leaders Malaria Alliance, said, "Once you don’t have children’s wards in hospitals dominated by children suffering from malaria, as you do in many of the endemic countries, you are going to free up a lot of resources that are going to combat the other diseases that are challenging our communities."

Malaria reduction rates, 2000-2012Malaria reduction rates, 2000-2012
x
Malaria reduction rates, 2000-2012
Malaria reduction rates, 2000-2012
Challenges in the fight against malaria include a growing resistance to anti-malarial drugs and insecticides. But Dr. Newman said there's an even bigger threat. "The most serious threat to malaria control and ultimate elimination is actually a financial one."

The U.N. Children's Fund and other organizations supply bed nets, one of the main protections against mosquitos that carry the malaria parasite. Agencies that offer help to prevent and treat malaria say they have only half the funds they need.

Without that money, the groups warn, gains will be reversed.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Cranksy from: USA
December 15, 2013 1:52 PM
I hope the optimism is justified.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More