By Stacey Naggiar
Advocacy and Communications Officer, MACEPA, and Global Health Corps Fellow
In Gambella, Ethiopia, a crowd of over 10,000 gathered to commemorate World Malaria Day. Attendees and distinguished guests, including the president of Gambella, His Excellency Gatluak Tuk Khot, and the WHO Ethiopia delegate, participated in a Test, Treat, and Track demonstration. Dr. Tedros Adhanom, special adviser to the prime minister of Ethiopia, wrote a piece for Huffington Post about the power of prevention in malaria elimination.
We’re pleased to announce MACEPA won second place in the #betterworld category of the Swiss Malaria Group Photo Contest. The winning photo depicts malaria focal point person Fortune Bwenje demonstrating proper indoor residual spraying technique at a training in Southern Province, Zambia. Below, an exhibit of the winning photos for World Malaria Day in a grey and rainy Geneva, Switzerland.
At the Tableau offices in Seattle, PATH co-hosted a World Malaria Day event highlighting the importance of private-public partnerships in malaria elimination work. This video about the Visualize No Malaria initiative in Zambia opened the session, followed by a panel. Read more about the partnership in this piece from the Seattle Times.
— MACEPA (@macepa_tweets) April 26, 2017
Senegal Minister of Health and former Roll Back Malaria Coordinator Awa Coll Seck presided over Senegal’s World Malaria Day commemoration in Kaolack, a large city in the center of the country. The event was held at a local school with many students participating, who, as Minister Seck highlighted, can be essential conduits of information about malaria prevention and treatment to their families.
Dr. Busiku Hamainza from Zambia’s National Malaria Elimination Centre addressed partners and US lawmakers on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on World Malaria Day. Attendees included representatives from PATH, the CDC, ASTMH, Presidents’ Malarai Initiative, Malaria No More, Nothing But Nets, Senator Chris Coons and others, demonstrating how malaria elimination is a partnership in the truest sense.
— PMI (@PMIgov) April 25, 2017
Zambia marked World Malaria Day with the launch of the country’s National Malaria Elimination Strategic Plan 2017–2021. Minister of Health Dr. Chitula Chilyufa (pictured below with the UN resident coordinator for Zambia, Janet Rogan) toured facilities at the newly branded National Malaria Elimination Centre and gave remarks on behalf of President Edgar Lungu. The ceremony included colorful musical, acting and dance performances by local groups, and the launch of a nationwide insecticide-treated net distribution campaign. Read more about the “Zambitious” plan to eliminate malaria in Zambia in a Mail & Guardian op-ed from PATH Zambia Country Director Dr. Nanthalile Mugala and Dr. Elizabeth Chizema, director of the National Malaria Elimination Centre. (More in the press release from PATH.)
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On the PATH Blog, Dr. Laurence Slutsker, director of PATH’s malaria and neglected tropical diseases programs, explores how new innovations—such as the RTS,S vaccine and super-sensitive rapid diagnostic tests—are valuable to countries as they push to eliminate malaria. Moving from the seemingly impossible to possible, Dr. Slutsker takes you on a journey through career-defining moments and uses Zambia as an example of how progress against malaria is made.
RTS,S update: the World Health Organization has identified Kenya, Ghana, and Malawi as the three countries to receive the vaccine. This will be the first real-world trial of RTS,S, which was co-developed by GlaxoSmithKline and PATH. It will include 750,000 children between the ages of five and 17 months who will receive either a placebo or four doses of the vaccine. (via BBC)
MACEPA Director Rick Steketee and Thom Eisle from Tulane co-authored an editorial for the Population Services International (PSI)-led ACT Watch series in Malaria Journal. The series is focused on looking at issues with access to diagnostics and treatment (specifically ACTs) for malaria.
Nigerian malaria researcher and Aspen Institute New Voices fellow, Ify Aniebo, writes a powerful piece in the Huffington Post about the need for more malaria research coming from within the African continent. Specifically, she calls for direct investment to improve scientific capacity in Africa and encourage entry into STEM fields.
Google has joined forces with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Clinton Health Access Initiative for a project called DiSARM that uses machine learning to map malaria with Google Earth. The project combines satellite imagery from Google, and information about weather and elevation, with locations of malaria cases in order to determine areas most at risk. (via Fortune)
Other reads from World Malaria Day include (but are not limited to):
- On the CDC blog Our Global Voices, Patrick Kachur, chief of the malaria branch, shares an optimistic outlook on malaria eradication.
- How is climate change impacting mosquito populations and mosquito-borne diseases? Read the piece in the New York Times magazine.
- NPR’s goats and soda reports on a new study that finds that, despite being eliminated in the US in the 1950s, malaria cases are still showing up at hospitals across the country.
- Global Health Corps fellows at PATH Chipasha Mwansa and Stacey Naggiar share their perspectives on eliminating malaria through the lens of their different roles in data surveillance and communications with MACEPA. (via Amplify / Medium)
And Bill Brieger commemorates the 17th anniversary of a day devoted to malaria (started in 2001) with a blog on Malaria Matters about the various themes and successes in years past.