The fight against malaria is depleted, and denounces the World Health Organization in a report. While the most affected countries have seen an increase in the number of cases, the available resources remain inadequate.
Despite many efforts to reduce the disease and after several years of falling, malaria continues to pose a threat to millions of people around the world. This is the regrettable conclusion of the World Health Organization (WHO) report published on Monday 19 November. Altogether, 219 million cases were recorded in 2017. A number dropped since it was 217 million in the previous year.
"No one should die from malaria, but the world faces a new reality: with the stagnation of progress, we are in danger of wasting years of work"Mr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the Organization, said in the report. Because of the past few years, the number of cases has fallen gradually, from 239 million in 2010 to 214 million in 2015. However, the fight against the epidemic is now "Neutral"denounces the WHO.
Gaps in coverage
Malaria is an infectious disease caused by parasites and transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. If there are treatments to cure, not everyone has access to it. It is responsible for about 435,000 deaths worldwide every year, of which 262,000 are children under 5 years of age. The proportion of malaria began to decline in the early 2000s using insecticides that received mosquitoes, new drugs and the money spent on the fight, the WHO said. But from 2013, it remains almost the same.
In 2017, about 70% of malaria cases were collected in 10 African countries and in India. And while the latter has noticed a reduction in disease-related morbidity in 2017, African countries have recorded 3.5 million more cases than last year. WHO points to gaps in coverage. Despite the increases in the distribution and use of impregnated mosquito nets, it estimates that half of those at risk are not asleep.
"A strong impact, for a heavy burden"
The picture is not all black, as the body describes some progress. In China and El Salvador, where malaria has been endemic for a long time, no local transmission has been reported in 2017. Paraguay is the first country in America free from the disease in 45 years. "The intensive efforts of the country can successfully reduce the risk faced by people"completes the WHO.
From these successes, it intends to put in place a new action strategy, entitled "A strong impact, for a heavy burden". The institution will work first with the ten countries most affected by Africa. Its goal is to be a facilitator who will coordinate the work of governments, NGOs and health actors.
But we must have the means. However, global contributions to the fight against malaria – as well as AIDS and tuberculosis – have remained unchanged since 2008. Today, € 2.5 billion is spent every year. More than doubling this number is necessary to achieve the United Nations targets to reduce morbidity and mortality from malaria by at least 40% by 2020.
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