Malaria Day in the Americas: Together We Can Defeat Malaria
By Betty Wolf, Vice President for Advancement, CDC Foundation
In the Americas, malaria cases have declined 60 percent since 2000, and deaths have declined 72 percent in 21 malaria-endemic countries. Seven of these countries are well on their way to eliminating malaria, and others are making significant progress against the disease. However, continued investments of human and financial resources are critical to further progress, especially in the areas of diagnostic testing, treatment and surveillance.
This Friday, November 6, is Malaria Day in the Americas, an opportunity to highlight successful efforts to prevent and control malaria. This is also a day to remember that continued support is urgently needed in all countries affected by this life-threatening disease transmitted through mosquito bites.
Hispaniola, which includes Haiti and the Dominican Republic, is the only island in the Caribbean where malaria is still endemic. The majority of malaria cases occur in Haiti. In addition to causing sickness and death, malaria is a significant drain on Haiti’s economy and the economic development of the island of Hispaniola as a whole.
The CDC Foundation is proud to support efforts to eliminate malaria on Hispaniola through Malaria Zero. This alliance of partners has come together to implement an evidence-based action plan to eliminate malaria from the island by 2020, which will strengthen Haiti’s health system and economy and create a malaria-free zone across the Caribbean.
While progress has been made to fight malaria in the Americas, there is much more to do. Eliminating malaria from Hispaniola will provide a significant boost to the broader effort to demonstrate and accelerate elimination in the Americas, and will help the global health community achieve its target of malaria elimination in 10 countries by 2020.
The alliance of public health organizations include three Atlanta-based organizations — CDC, the CDC Foundation and The Carter Center.
To learn more about Malaria Zero, please visit our website.
Together, we can—and we will—defeat this devastating disease.