THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2016

UN, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation lay out plan for malaria eradication

The United Nations and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have teamed up to promote strategies to fight malaria globally. 

The result of their effort is a report titled “From Aspiration to Action: What Will It Take to End Malaria?” The report details strategies, tools and financing world leaders can use to help eradicate malaria.

“Over the past 15 years, we have seen tremendous progress in reducing the burden of malaria globally – a direct result of our collective action – and we now stand in the unique position of putting an end to this disease forever,” Ray Chambers, Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and Malaria Secretary-General Special Envoy, said.

According to a UN press release, deaths due to malaria have reduced in recent years with 6.2 million lives saved and 663 million cases prevented since 2000, the disease still results in the death of about one child per minute worldwide.

The reduction in malaria contraction over the past 15 years has resulted in half of countries worldwide being malaria free, which represents 20 percent of the targeted reductions in maternal and child mortality outlined in the Millennium Development Goals. However, the report states that if further efforts were undertaken and the disease were completely eradicated it would save 11 million lives and provide $2 trillion in economic benefits.

“The next five years are vital for setting in motion an ambitious-yet-achievable plan to eradicate malaria by 2040," Chambers said. "We must double down on our commitment and move with deliberate haste to bring in new investments, develop new tools, and implement new regional strategies to see our unified goal of a malaria-free world become a reality.”

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