World Malaria Day 2018 | Theme, History and Significance

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World Malaria Day 2018

World Malaria Day is celebrated every year on April 25  to recognize the global effort to control malaria and also to spread awareness about the around the world. The World Malaria Day theme for this year’s Malaria Day is ‘Ready to beat Malaria’ and emphasizes the collective energy and commitment of the global malaria community that is uniting all around the world to curb the disease and working towards the common goal to making the world malaria free. Malaria is caused by Plasmodium parasite and is transmitted in humans through the bite of Anopheles mosquito.

The World Malaria Day this year coincides with activities that will mark WHO’s 70th anniversary. As per the World Malaria Report that was released in November 2017, there were 216 million cases of malaria in 2016 whereas in 2015 211 million cases were reported.

World Malaria Day 2018 Theme

The World Malaria Day theme for this year’s Malaria Day is ‘Ready to beat Malaria’. The theme marks the importance of collective responsibility and commitment to the global malaria community in bringing together people on working towards a world free of malaria. The theme puts the exemplary progress achieved in tackling malaria under the spotlight. It also puts focus on disturbing trends captured in World malaria report in 2017.

World Malaria Day Theme

The World Health Assembly instituted World Malaria Day in May 2007. The World Malaria Day this year coincides with activities that will mark WHO’s 70th anniversary

  • World Malaria Day 2018 Theme: “Ready to beat Malaria”
  • World Malaria Day 2016-2017 Theme: “End Malaria For Good”
  • World Malaria Day 2013-2014-2015: “Invest in the future: defeat malaria”
  • World Malaria Day 2012 Theme: “Sustain Gains, Save Lives: Invest in Malaria”
  • World Malaria Day 2011 Theme: “Achieving Progress and Impact”
  • World Malaria Day 2009-2010 Theme: “Counting malaria out”
  • World Malaria Day 2008 Theme: “Malaria: a disease without borders”

World Malaria Day

The WHO says in a report that the current pace of malaria control is not sufficient as per its set target for 2020 under the WHO Global Technical Strategy for Malaria 2016-2030. The target calls for the reduction in the incidence of malaria cases and death rates by almost 40%.

The World Malaria Day is aimed at taking an immediate and urgent action in malaria control because the major gains in the fight against malaria are under threat unless this is done. Hence, the WHO invites for bigger and greater investments and expanding coverage of tools that help in preventing, treating and diagnosing malaria.

Malaria Free countries

“WHO estimates that 21 countries are in a position to achieve this goal, including six countries in the African Region by 2020. These countries are Algeria, Botswana, Cape Verde, Comoros, South Africa and Swaziland.

  • Recently, Sri Lanka was certified by WHO on having eliminated malaria, a life-threatening disease which long affected the island country.
  • India unlikely to cut malaria by half in 2020: WHO

World Malaria Day Important Key  facts

  • Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected female Anopheles mosquitoes. It is preventable and curable.
  • In 2016, there were an estimated 216 million cases of malaria in 91 countries, an increase of 5 million cases over 2015.
  • Malaria deaths reached 445 000 in 2016, a similar number (446 000) to 2015.
  • The WHO African Region carries a disproportionately high share of the global malaria burden. In 2016, the region was home to 90% of malaria cases and 91% of malaria deaths.
  • Total funding for malaria control and elimination reached an estimated US$ 2.7 billion in 2016. Contributions from governments of endemic countries amounted to US$ 800 million, representing 31% of funding.
  • Children under 5 years of age, infants, HIV/AIDS patients, pregnant women, mobile populations, and travelers are at higher risk of developing malaria.
  • To protect these populations, there is a need for the National Malaria Control Programmes to take special measures.
  • Malaria is known to be a life-threatening disease which is caused by parasites that are transmitted to people through bites of infected female Anopheles mosquitoes. Malaria can be cured and prevented.
  • In 2016, US$ 2.7 billion was given as funds for malaria control. Around US$ 800 million was contributed by governments of endemic countries – this represented 31% of the total funding for malaria control and prevention.
  • Back in 2016, deaths caused by malaria were estimated around 4,45,000. In 2015, the number was 4,46,000, which is quite close to the numbers in 2016.
  • Speaking of malaria cases, there were as many as 216 million malaria cases reported in 2016. These cases were reported in 91 countries. There was an increase in 5 million cases since 2015 in 2016.
  • It is the WHO African region which has a disproportionately high share of malaria burden globally. 90% of malaria cases were reported from WHO African region in 2016, along with 91% of malaria deaths.

World Malaria Day History

The World Health Assembly instituted World Malaria Day in May 2007. The purpose of the event is to give countries in affected regions the chance to learn from each other’s experiences and support one another’s efforts. More than 500 million people each year and kills more than one million people, according to WHO. However, Malaria is preventable and curable.

World Malaria Day was developed from Africa Malaria Day which was first held in 2008. It is basically an event that had been observed since 2001 by African governments. They worked towards the progress goal which aimed at controlling malaria and reduces its mortality in African countries.

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