Your MACEPA Malaria Minute (4/21/2017)

By Stacey Naggiar
Advocacy and Communications Officer, MACEPA, and Global Health Corps Fellow

A team from the National Malaria Elimination Centre planning for commemoration activities in Lusaka. Photo: PATH

World Malaria Day: just around the corner (April 25, 2017)

We look forward to hearing about and seeing all the commemoration activities around the world. Have a personal story about why World Malaria Day is meaningful to you? Let us know here: http://www.makingmalariahistory.org/contact/ 

IN THE NEWS

Against the odds, a vaccinologist and World Health Organization consultant points to countries being certified as malaria-free as a reason to be hopeful that “a world without malaria is possible”. He adds that 19 countries are in the pre-elimination stages and calls on governments and their partners to step up investment to accelerate progress. (via Huffington Post)

An intense rainy season caused higher than usual spike in cases and deaths of malaria in sub-Saharan African countries this year. The editor comment in the Southern Times calls on African leaders to commit more resources to malaria. 

With the threat of resistance to anti-malarial drugs looming some scientists are looking to medicinal plants as a possible alternative to treat malaria. Researchers in Kenya studying indigenous plants have already found some have the potential to kill the malaria parasite. (via The Conversation)

On Malaria Matters this week, Bill Brieger discusses findings from his research exploring best practices for distribution of insecticide treated nets (ITNs) in urban settings in Ghana. Among the findings: a coupon coding system improved delivery and mass distribution campaigns are effective for increasing coverage. Read his blog for more challenges and recommendations. 

Following his meeting with President Trump last month, Bill Gates tells Bloomberg that he is hopeful Trump’s promises to cut funding for international health aid programs will not move forward due to his track record for pragmatism and the increased risk to national security. 

Gates is using his position to yield similar influence in the UK where the conservative party is threatening to abandon the UK’s spending on aid overseas. “…the Microsoft founder said that the leadership role taken by the UK could determine whether ambitious efforts to eradicate malaria in Africa were launched.” (via The Guardian)

ON THE BLOG

Photo: PATH/Gabe Bienczycki

On the PATH blog, Jolayne Houtz shares the story of community champions leading the fight to eliminate malaria in Senegal. With support from the private sector and PATH, Senegal is training volunteers like Coumba Diouf to educate their communities and change behaviors that put people at risk for malaria. 

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