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‘India must increase access to quality healthcare to eliminate Malaria’ Health

World Mosquito Day 2022 is an annual observance to commemorate Sir Ronald Ross’ discovery that female anopheles mosquitoes transmit malaria to humans. On World Mosquito Day, Malaria No More, a leading non-governmental organisation working for malaria elimination in India, has underlined its commitment to support India’s goal of eliminating malaria by 2030.

Malaria is preventable and treatable, but it continues to have a devastating impact on the health and livelihoods of people across the world. In 2020, there were an estimated 241 million new cases of malaria and 627,000 malaria-related deaths in 85 countries. According to the World Malaria Report 2021, India accounted for 83 percent of cases in the WHO South-East Asia Region. In India, malaria threatens a population of about 1.26 billion and is responsible for an economic burden of $1.9 billion.

“Malaria has been one of India’s long-standing public health problems. While we have achieved commendable success in fighting the disease, we continue to face several barriers to reaching elimination,” said Mr. Pratik Kumar, India Country Director, Malaria No More. “Accelerating introduction and scaling of new tools & technologies is key in surveillance, treatment, and care. There is a need for a robust plan to accelerate ongoing efforts and achieve the ambitious goal of our nation to eliminate malaria by 2030,” he added.

Malaria No More has been working at the last mile, in Koraput and Malkangiri districts of Odisha, to address malaria in these high endemic zones. To ensure access to malaria care at the last mile, Malaria No More trained ‘Doots’ and ‘Saathis’ to mobilize tribal communities and actively engage in each step of testing, treatment, and reporting. Through these efforts, Malaria No More has been successful in ensuring over 40 percent reduction of transmission over the past year and has ensured a 100 percent treatment completion rate and zero malaria deaths in its areas of operation.

Along with offering critical health services, the organisation strives to build a malaria-resilient community and has been undertaking consistent community engagement. Malaria No More disseminates health education messages for malaria, ensures bed net usage, and organises village cleaning drives to equip the community with the requisite know-how to combat malaria. The organisation has ensured over 90 percent usage of LLINs through regular night surveillance.

Malaria No More is an international non–profit organisation founded in 2006 at the White House Summit on Malaria. It has offices in Seattle, Washington D.C., New York (U.S.), Delhi and Bhubaneswar (India), with affiliates in the United Kingdom and Japan. Since its inception, the SSU has been providing technical and advocacy support to the Government of Odisha. In addition, MNM also has set up 2 District Program Management Units (DPMUs) in Koraput and Malkangiri.

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