Saturday , August 13 2022

Malaria report: India, 15 other African countries account for 80% of the world's cases, says WHO


United Nations: India and 15 other sub-Saharan African countries accounted for nearly 80% of malaria reported globally last year, according to a WHO report showing that 1.25 billion people in India were in danger of contracting mosquitoes disease.

However, the World Health Organization (WHO) report on global malaria 2018, in an encouraging note, said that India is the only country to report on progress in reducing malaria in 2017 as compared to 2016.

It is said that five countries representing almost half of all cases of malaria were Nigeria (25%), Democratic Republic of Congo (11%), Mozambique (5%), India and Uganda (4%).
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In total, 15 Sub-Saharan African countries and India have performed nearly 80% of the global malaria burden. In India, 1.25 billion people in the population were at risk of malaria, the report said.
He said the reduction targets for global infections and deaths from malaria were not met.

The study shows that while new cases have declined steadily by 2016, their numbers have risen from 217 to 219 million in 2017: the targets set by the WHO global strategy for malaria 20162030 require a reduction in the incidence of malaria and mortality rate of at least 40% by 2020.

The 10 countries with the highest burdens in Africa reported increases in malaria in 2017 as compared to 2016.

Of these, Nigeria, Madagascar and the Democratic Republic of Congo recorded the largest estimated increases, all with more than half a million cases.

In contrast, India reported three million fewer cases in the same period, a decrease of 24 versus 2016.

However, cases in African countries increased by 3.5 million compared to the previous year.

Almost 80% of global malaria deaths in 2017 were concentrated in 17 African and Indian countries, according to the report.

Seven of these countries accounted for 53% of the total deaths from malaria: Nigeria (19%), Democratic Republic of Congo (11%), Burkina Faso (6%), Tanzania (5%), Sierra Leone (4%) and India (4%).

The report noted that although India "made impressive gains and was on track" to meet the global technical strategy for the 20162030 malaria targets, it accounted for another 4% of the global burden of malaria morbidity and 52% of the WHO African Region .

India has been among the countries that have detected high rates of treatment failure and responded by changing their treatment policies, he said.

The report added that India and Indonesia were about to get a 2040% reduction in the incidence of cases by 2020.

WHO, the United Nations' main agency for health and its partners, has launched a "high-burden response plan for a high impact" coinciding with launching the report to increase prevention, treatment and investment to protect vulnerable people , and get reductions in malaria deaths and disease back on the path.

The plan is based on the principle that no one should die from a disease that can be easily prevented and diagnosed and that is totally curable with the treatments available.

"The world faces a new reality: as progress stagnates, we are in danger of scouring years of work, investment and success in reducing the number of people suffering from this disease," said WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

"We recognize that we have to do something different now," Ghebreyesus said.

A positive note was recorded in Paraguay, which was certified this year as being free of malaria, the first American country to have this status in 45 years.

The number of countries approaching disposal has increased from 37 to 46, and three countries, Algeria, Argentina and Uzbekistan, have requested formal certification of malaria from the WHO.

Internal funding has been identified as a key to the success of the WHO malaria strategy.

The UN agency says funding that has reached its level should reach at least $ 6.6 billion annually by 2020, more than double the amount available today.

Malaria kills about 660,000 people each year.

| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai

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