Monday, April 25, 2011

April 25th - World Malaria Day

April 25th is World Malaria Day. Take a moment to learn a bit more about this deadly but preventable disease, about ongoing efforts to make progress towards zero malaria deaths by 2015, and about the obstacles to meeting this important goal. In 2008, there were 247 million cases of Malaria and over 1 million deaths, mostly among children living in African countries, where the disease accounts for about 20% of all childhood deaths. The WHO offers a good introduction to the disease:

"Malaria is caused by a parasite called Plasmodium, which is transmitted via the bites of infected mosquitoes. In the human body, the parasites multiply in the liver, and then infect red blood cells. Symptoms of malaria include fever, headache, and vomiting, and usually appear between 10 and 15 days after the mosquito bite. If not treated, malaria can quickly become life-threatening by disrupting the blood supply to vital organs. In many parts of the world, the parasites have developed resistance to a number of malaria medicines. Key interventions to control malaria include: prompt and effective treatment with artemisinin-based combination therapies; use of insecticidal nets by people at risk; and indoor residual spraying with insecticide to control the vector mosquitoes."

To learn more about Malaria and efforts to promote health for all, visit: