Many Voices, a Single Theme
The World Malaria Day theme provides a common platform for countries to showcase their successes in malaria control and unify diverse initiatives in the changing global context. Malaria-endemic countries have made incredible gains in malaria in the last decade, but sustaining them will take extra efforts until the job is finished and malaria is eliminated worldwide. While efforts to prevent, diagnose and treat malaria have gained important momentum over the past years, an annual shortfall in funding threatens to slow down progress, particularly across Africa where high-burden countries are facing critical funding gaps. Unless the world can find a way to bridge the funding gaps and endemic countries have the resources and technical support they need to implement sound malaria control plans, malaria resurgence will likely take many more lives.
The theme for 2016 is “End Malaria For Good”. Following the great progress made under the Millennium Development Goals, it is important to build on this success and ‘end malaria for good’ under the Sustainable Development Goals.
Smart investments and strong partnerships have resulted in dramatic progress against malaria in the past 15 years.
- The malaria fight is one of the most inspiring global health stories of our time. Working together, endemic countries, donors, organizations, and communities have reached millions of people with effective tools, diagnosis, and treatment.
- Malaria mortality has decreased by 60 percent, with 6.2 million lives saved since 2000. Malaria is no longer the leading cause of death of African children.
- Between 2000 and 2015, 57 countries reduced malaria cases by at least 75 percent. Now, leaders in Africa, Asia and the Americas have committed to eliminating malaria transmission altogether.
Defeating malaria is critical to ending poverty and improving maternal and child health.
- Lives saved from malaria are estimated to account for 20 percent of all progress in reducing child mortality in sub-Saharan Africa since 2000. Efforts to prevent malaria in pregnancy alone have averted 94,000 newborn deaths between 2009 and 2012.
- Less malaria means healthier societies, increased attendance at school and work, more productive communities, and stronger economies.
- Eliminating malaria is critical to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, and must remain a key priority for the global development community.
We must sustain robust financial investment, political will and innovation to ensure continued success against malaria.
- The continued development of new solutions and strategies – including next-generation drugs, diagnostics, and vaccines – is critical if we are to further accelerate gains and mitigate the threat of drug and insecticide resistance.
- Strong regional collaborations that address cross-border malaria transmission and broader health security issues help countries and regions to achieve elimination goals.
- While both international and domestic funding to fight malaria have dramatically increased between 2005 and 2014, continued strong commitments and sustained funding will be needed to end malaria once and for all.
- If we lose focus, we risk losing record gains. Over the last century, there have been dozens of resurgences of malaria in countries around the world, many linked to decreases in funding to fight the disease.
Eliminating malaria will make the world a better, safer place for future generations and enable millions of people to reach their full potential.
- Investment in the malaria fight is one of the best buys in global health, second only to routine immunization. The tools are cost-effective and the return on investment is high.
- Mosquito-borne diseases are a major cause of illnesses and deaths worldwide. Advances in research and tools to fight malaria will help transform how we combat other infectious diseases, like Zika Virus.
- Ending malaria transmission will increase the quality of life of millions of people and free up resources that are currently being used to fight the disease.
- Our goal is eliminate malaria in at least ten countries by the year 2020.
- By working together we can do what we once thought
was impossible: end malaria for good.