News / Health

UN Calls for Unity to Fight Drug-Resistant Malaria

A scientist prepares a blood sample in a laboratory at the Center for Scientific Research Caucaseco in the outskirts of Cali, Colombia, April 25, 2012.A scientist prepares a blood sample in a laboratory at the Center for Scientific Research Caucaseco in the outskirts of Cali, Colombia, April 25, 2012.
x
A scientist prepares a blood sample in a laboratory at the Center for Scientific Research Caucaseco in the outskirts of Cali, Colombia, April 25, 2012.
A scientist prepares a blood sample in a laboratory at the Center for Scientific Research Caucaseco in the outskirts of Cali, Colombia, April 25, 2012.
Ron Corben
BANGKOK — Health ministers from the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) are being asked to support United Nations efforts to stem the spread of drug-resistant strains of malaria, especially along the borders of Cambodia and Burma. 

Scientists fear resistant strains of malaria may spread beyond South East Asia, reaching continents such as Africa, a region with many victims of the mosquito-borne parasite.

Thomas Teuscher, executive director of the United Nations-backed Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM), says more effort is needed to ensure that drug-resistant malaria at least remains localized in South East Asia.

"Right now we need to intensify our attention and action in a way to keep the world safe from malaria epidemics in the future by making sure the medicines we use at present remain useful for as long as possible - so the topic of containing the spread of drug resistance in the Great Mekong Region," Teuscher said.

The World Health Organization (WHO) - a key supporter in RBM - together with the World Bank and United Nations agencies, says malaria threatens 2.2 billion people in 20 countries across the Asia Pacific region with 330 million at risk in the ASEAN countries alone.

In 2010 the Asia Pacific region had 28 million cases of malaria with 38,000 lives lost. Over 90 per cent of the deaths occurred in India, Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea.

Health officials have been alarmed by the growing numbers of malaria patients in Thailand and Cambodia and in the border regions of Malaysia.

Scientists blame the consumption of single-use drugs and sales of fake drugs as the key reasons for the growing drug resistance.  Teuscher says the concerns are growing that drug treatments will fail at some point.

"At present it is the threat of drug resistance - to site the World Health Organization correctly - it takes more time to clear the parasite in the blood of malaria patients at present. But the drug still eventually cures people but it just takes a lot more time. So that is a strong indication that the drug might at some point not work at all anymore."

Teuscher called for more cross border cooperation to contain the threat of drug-resistant malaria from spreading. But he says to succeed it requires "perfect case" management of all malaria fevers, avoidance of mono-therapies and careful monitoring.

He is hopeful with sufficient resources malaria may eventually be wiped out.

"We can go very far and it is mostly an issue of political commitment to deploy that vision at the strategic background in the right place of course and to then mobilize a broad range of financial and human resources to make that happen," Teuscher added.  "It is possible, if I were young, one could probably say with an effort, this commitment, we can achieve it over the next 30 years, but it requires harmonized vision."

The two days of meetings in Phuket, Thailand are set to conclude Friday with discussions also on control of chronic non-communicable diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes and chronic lung diseases.

Other topics are universal health care, tobacco controls, the spread of the AIDS virus in urban areas as well as emergency disaster management.

ASEAN health ministers and officials are being joined in the talks with ministers from China, Japan and South Korea.

You May Like

China’s Influence Grows With New Infrastructure Bank

Multibillion-dollar China-backed and BRICS-supported Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank seen as possible challenger to such lenders as IMF, World Bank More

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

Rabbi Michel Serfaty makes the rounds in his friendship bus to encourage dialogue and break down barriers between the two groups More

Post-deal Iran Leaders Need 'Economic Momentum' to Solidify

Economists say deal could inject more than $100 billion into coffers - not enough to entirely rescue ailing economy - but maybe adequate to create 'economic momentum' More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: andrew lyasimba from: sumbawanga tanzania
July 07, 2012 2:17 AM
We thanks to the WHO for more cooperation to avoid this dangerours desease malaria so i advice the people of this country to us mosqutor net so as to avoid lost of their life.
And the doctors and nurses they must advice their people about the importance of using net.
GOD HELP ALL OF THEM AND MAKE THEM ALIVE.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Gay Marriage Ruling Yields Real-life Impacti
X
Michael Bowman
June 28, 2015 10:05 PM
Friday’s landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States is an outcome few thought possible just years ago, and shows a nation that increasingly tolerates and even celebrates the hopes and aspirations of gay people. VOA’s Michael Bowman spoke to a same-sex couple that will benefit from the high court ruling, and to a Christian scholar who is apprehensive about its potential consequences for America’s faith community.
Video

Video US Gay Marriage Ruling Yields Real-life Impact

Friday’s landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States is an outcome few thought possible just years ago, and shows a nation that increasingly tolerates and even celebrates the hopes and aspirations of gay people. VOA’s Michael Bowman spoke to a same-sex couple that will benefit from the high court ruling, and to a Christian scholar who is apprehensive about its potential consequences for America’s faith community.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Syrian Refugees Return to Tal Abyad

Syrian refugees in Turkey confirm they left their hometown of Tal Abyad because of intense fighting and coalition airstrikes, not because Kurdish fighters were engaged in ethnic cleansing, as some Turkish officials charged. VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer, in Tal Abyad, finds that civilians coming back to the town agree, as we hear in this report narrated by Roger Wilkison.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
Video

Video Chemical-Sniffing Technology Fights Australia's Graffiti Vandals

Cities and towns all over the world spend huge amounts of resources battling graffiti writers who deface buildings, public transport vehicles and even monuments. Authorities in Sydney, Australia, hope a new chemical-sniffing technology finally will stop vandals from scribbling on walls in the passenger areas of commuter trains. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Cambodia Struggling to Curb Child Labor

Earlier this year a United Nations report found 10 percent of Cambodian children aged 7-14 are working – one of the highest rates in the region – and said one in four children in that age bracket are forced to quit school to help their families. Although the child labor rate has dropped over the past decade, Cambodia has a lot more to do – including keeping more children in school. Robert Carmichael reports for VOA from Phnom Penh.

VOA Blogs