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Jakarta Post

Global malaria goals ambitious but achievable: WHO

  • The Jakarta Post

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, July 14, 2015   /  05:25 pm

The World Health Organization'€™s global malaria program director Pedro Alonso said the new 2030 malaria goals and the 2020 and 2025 milestones, laid out in the WHO and Roll Back Malaria strategies, are ambitious but achievable.

'€œWe must accelerate progress toward malaria elimination to ensure that neither parasite resistance to drugs, mosquito resistance to insecticides, nor malaria resurgence unravels the tremendous gains to date. We can and must achieve even greater impact to protect the investment the global community has made,'€ he said on Tuesday.

WHO has estimated there will be 214 million cases of malaria infection in 2015, claiming the lives of approximately 472,000 people, the majority of which are African children under 5 years of age. Despite unprecedented progress to date, more than half of the world'€™s population remains at risk of malaria infection today.

In Roll Back Malaria'€™s AIM document, experts outline that more than US$100 billion is needed to achieve the 2030 target of reducing the malaria burden by 90 percent, with an additional $10 billion needed to fund research and development of new tools, including new drugs and insecticides. To achieve the first milestone of reducing malaria incidence and mortality rates by 40 percent, annual malaria investments will need to rise to $6.4 billion by 2020.

Current declines in the international development financing scheme is impacting the world'€™s ability to maintain progress against malaria, although total international and domestic funding peaked at $2.7 billion in 2013.

The UN says acceleration toward malaria elimination will require increased financing by the international donor community, as well as increased domestic financing by affected countries.

'€œInvesting to achieve the new 2030 malaria goals will avert nearly 3 billion malaria cases and save over 10 million lives. If we are able to reach these targets, the world stands to generate $4 trillion of additional economic output across the 2016 to 2030 time frame,'€ said Roll Back Malaria Partnership executive director Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré.

'€œNow, more than ever, we must re-focus our efforts and re-commit our budgets so we can continue saving lives and unlock economic potential in communities around the world,'€ he said. (ebf)(++++)