Ending malaria in Asia Pacific

Sub Levels

At the 9th East Asia Summit (EAS) in 2014, the Indian Prime Minister, along with 17 other Asia-Pacific government leaders, committed to the goal of achieving a malaria-free Asia-Pacific region by 2030. Made both in India and throughout the region. Sri Lanka and China have eliminated malaria, while many countries such as Bhutan, Bangladesh and Nepal are close to eradicating it. India is no exception. Between 2015 and his 2021, the country has seen an 86% drop in malaria cases and a 76% drop in malaria deaths.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there will be an estimated 247 million cases of malaria in 2021, with an estimated 619,000 attributable to malaria. Africa accounts for 95% of malaria cases and 96% of malaria deaths, accounting for a disproportionately high share of the global malaria burden, with children under five years of age accounting for approximately 80% of all malaria deaths. increase. Of her 247 million malaria cases worldwide in 2021, Asia-Pacific countries contributed her 1.79 million. vivax malaria As the dominant species in many countries.

Malaria in Asia-Pacific countries presents unique complexities and challenges in terms of biological, clinical, epidemiological, and social aspects. In this region, Papua New Guinea (PNG) will account for 36% of the burden in 2021, followed by Pakistan (22%), Indonesia (17%), India (9%), Afghanistan (5%) and Solomon Islands (5%). , Myanmar (4%). Solomon Islands (119) had the highest annual parasite prevalence (API), followed by PNG (65.5), and the rest of the countries had an API less than 2. For comparison, India’s average API is 0.11 (2021 data).

The malaria burden in India is concentrated in the hard-to-reach forest areas of Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Orissa, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura. In these areas, environmental conditions coupled with sub-optimal infrastructure and development give communities access to health services.

India has an estimated 25 high-burden districts (2021) and these ‘malaria hotspots’ should be targeted for intensive and targeted malaria eradication efforts to free them from malaria as soon as possible. . These areas are designated as Category 2 (Moderate) and 3 (Highest) based on the intensity of malaria transmission. There is an informed consensus that eradicating malaria from these high-burden areas represents a pathway to eradicate malaria from the country.

Projects have emerged that have generated considerable evidence of what is possible to complete the task of elimination. A malaria eradication demonstration project in Mandra, Madhya Pradesh, located in a highly contagious tribal area where malaria is endemic, showed that eradication is possible in less than four years. The Mandla project provided rich and detailed models and strategies. We define this as the “Science of Malaria Eradication” and can be used for subnational, national and regional eradication programs in the Asia-Pacific region.

Key lessons learned from the Mandla project include oversight at the management, technical, operational and financial levels; regular independent reviews by public health experts; regular sharing of data and results; It was important for regular formal briefings at national conferences on the leadership of sub-national level. Through the lessons learned from the Mandora Malaria Eradication Demonstration Project, I have gained a better understanding of the “Science of Malaria Eradication”. These lessons can be used for the effective and time-bound implementation of other local, national and regional eradication programmes, with contextual adaptation.

A malaria-free Asia and Pacific is achievable by 2030.

This optimism comes from the fact that there are safe, effective and affordable diagnostic tests, drugs and vector control tools made in the region. We use control and case management tools.

Identify all cases requiring prompt treatment, including low-density infections and asymptomatic cases, so that all cases are treated promptly, followed after treatment, and imported malaria can be detected and treated What we do is “science to eradicate malaria”. prevented. Other aspects that have been shown to be relevant include managing ongoing training and development programs to ensure frontline employees are always performing at their best, and management controls and regular external training. Includes developing reviews.

Three keys to achieving our goals accelerate our progress: 3) Political commitment at multiple levels of leadership, from prime ministers and governors to heads of government.

You can win the battle against malaria. There is science to prove it.

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The above views are those of the author.

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