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Positive Trend Toward Malaria Elimination Could Reverse Without More Funding, Prevention Efforts, WHO Report Warns

Devex: Fight against malaria stalling and could reverse, warns 2017 World Malaria Report
“Between 2015 and 2016, there were five million more malaria cases globally, and Rwanda saw the greatest increase in malaria cases, with nearly a million people contracting the mosquito-borne disease, according to the World Malaria Report, released on Wednesday. The report also warned progress in fighting the virus has stalled and could reverse…” (Cheney, 11/29).

The Guardian: Malaria is back on the rise as lack of funds stalls push to wipe out disease
“…The WHO director general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, warned of a ‘troubling shift’ in the downward trajectory of malaria, one of the biggest killers in poorer countries, and until recently, one of the greatest public health success stories. There is a real chance malaria could be eliminated, this year’s World Malaria Report suggests, but only if funding increases…” (McVeigh, 11/29).

Los Angeles Times: The world is off track in its goal to eliminate malaria. Here’s why.
“…Reasons for the slowdown differed across specific regions and countries, health officials said. But contributing factors included insufficient funding, a lack of interventions to prevent spread of the disease, risks posed by conflict in malaria endemic zones, irregular climate patterns, and the emergence of parasite resistance, the report said…” (Simmons, 11/28).

Nature: Rise in malaria cases sparks fears of a resurgence
“… ‘For the first time, we can confidently say that we have stopped making progress,’ says Pedro Alonso, the director of the Global Malaria Programme at the WHO in Geneva, Switzerland. Alonso worries that governments and donors have become complacent about malaria, given that deaths from the disease fell by an estimated 62 percent between 2000 and 2015. ‘We know what happens when we stop applying pressure,’ Alonso says. ‘Malaria comes back with a vengeance’…” (Maxmen, 11/29).

Reuters: WHO fears complacency as progress against malaria stalls
“…Malaria infected around 216 million people in 91 countries in 2016, an increase of 5 million cases over the previous year, the WHO said in its annual World Malaria Report. It killed 445,000 people, about the same number as in 2015. The vast majority of deaths were in children under the age of five in the poorest parts of sub-Saharan Africa…” (Kelland, 11/28).

VOA News: WHO: Global Progress Against Malaria at Risk as Funding Stalls
“…In addition to improving the coverage of existing methods of malaria prevention, the WHO calls for urgent investment in new tools. ‘More research is needed to develop an effective malaria vaccine that could cover the populations that, at the moment, have high malaria rates and that, perhaps, do not use the available interventions even when they are being funded,’ [David Conway, a professor from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine,] said…” (Ridgwell, 11/29).

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