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The Asia-Pacific region has made steady progress against malaria during the pandemic, but gaps remain in some high-burden countries.

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The most significant burden reported in Papua New Guinea is accompanied by high cases and stagnant developments.

According to the World Health Organization’s Annual World Malaria Report 2021, steady progress was made across the Asia-Pacific region in the fight against malaria in 2020. The Asia-Pacific Leaders Malaria Alliance (APLMA) and the Asia-Pacific Malaria Eradication Network (APMEN) welcome the overall progress of the region despite the challenges posed by COVID-19, but 2030. We call for the continued efforts and cooperation of each country to eradicate malaria by the year.

Almost two years after the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare systems around the world have been tested in unprecedented ways. According to the report, worldwide malaria cases (241 million) and deaths (627,000) will increase in 2020, an increase of about 14 million in 2020 compared to 2019, and 69,000 deaths. Did. Most of the increase in the number of cases in 2020 occurred on the African continent. Two-thirds (47,000) of these additional deaths were primarily associated with the disruption of malaria services during a pandemic in sub-Saharan Africa.

Despite the turmoil in COVID-19, many countries around the world and in the Asia-Pacific region quickly adapted to ensure continued malaria services, while the worst was feared. The region continues to make steady progress, but challenges remain.

Asia Pacific progress and remaining challenges

The Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), which consists of Cambodia, China (Yunnan Province), Laos People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam, continues to make significant progress with the number of cases in 2020 decreasing by 27% compared to 2019. Achieved. WHO reports that GMS reduced the number of cases of Plasmodium falciparum by 93% between 2000 and 2020, and reduced all cases of malaria, including Plasmodium vivax, by 78% during the same period.

WHO estimates that India reduced the number of malaria cases between 2019 and 2020, recording progress on malaria among the 11 countries that are part of WHO’s high-burden to high-impact efforts. Was only in India.

As another important milestone, China received WHO malaria-free certification this year, and Sri Lanka continues to be malaria-free. Countries on the verge of exclusion were also not stopped by COVID-19. There have been no human cases of malaria in Malaysia for the third consecutive year, but Cambodia, the People’s Democratic Republic of Laos, Malaysia, the Republic of Korea, East Timor, Nepal, Banuatu and Vietnam all have zero indigenous deaths due to malaria in 2020. bottom.

“The findings of this year’s Global Malaria Report show that the Asia-Pacific region has made great strides in reducing malaria cases and avoiding mortality, including cross-border cooperation, strong leadership and WHO. Is a testament to our international cooperation with our partners, Global Fund and RBM, ”said Dr. Sarthak Das, Chief Executive Officer of the Asia Pacific Leaders Malaria Alliance (APLMA).

Despite these advances, other countries have a significant burden that cannot be ignored. WHO estimates that Papua New Guinea (PNG), the Philippines, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu have all seen an increase in malaria cases over the past five years.

“We cannot deny the ongoing devastation caused by malaria in high-burden countries, including PNG. India and Indonesia are making steady progress, but the rest of the challenges cannot be ignored. All of us will be safe. Until, no one is safe. To work towards the eradication of malaria, not only continue regional and global solutions, but also coordinated local solutions, and ongoing in areas such as GMS. We cannot be satisfied with almost eliminated countries such as Bhutan and East Timor, which emphasize the importance of cross-border cooperation, and vulnerable countries such as Afghanistan and Myanmar. Both malaria and Pandemic-related interventions, including programs to improve monitoring, data and public health management, with a focus on the year’s malaria eradication goals, especially when the systems and the communities they serve are most vulnerable. Find creative ways to create synergies. ”Das has been added.

“While the results achieved elsewhere in the world are impressive, PNG cannot ignore the fact that it faces another situation in which malaria is causing tremendous pain to people. 2014 Since then, we continue to bear the most significant burden of malaria cases and deaths in the Asia-Pacific region. This situation is an absolute crisis, “said PNG’s Department of Health Program Manager for Malaria and Vector-mediated Diseases. Leo Sora Makita says.

“The amazing resurgence and increase over the years has been exacerbated by pandemics these days. Despite the challenges we continue to face, we are working to reduce the burden of malaria. We have done it before and can do it. All stakeholders are united and funded to reduce the ongoing high burden of malaria in PNG. We urge you to continue to focus on eradicating malaria in the pandemic, “he added.

Amita Chebbi, Senior Director of APLMA and APMEN, commented on the major advances in GMS, saying: The great success seen, especially in Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand, reflects the basics of strengthening the health care system, focusing on access to hard-to-reach communities and maintaining funding to ensure monitoring and case management. doing. This is just the beginning to ensure that GMS and its neighbors in the Asia-Pacific region continue on the essential path to eradicating malaria. “

With continuous resilience, commitment and cooperation, we can maintain momentum against malaria, save lives and keep progress. And importantly, we can get on track to eradicate malaria by 2030 in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.

The impact of COVID-19 on malaria in the region will be explored in more detail in the upcoming report, Eradication of Malaria in the Middle of COVID-19: A Test of Resilience in the Asia-Pacific Region. Eradication of malaria organized by APLMA and APMEN in collaboration with the Royal Government of Bhutan on December 13, 2021. Notably, this report is a pandemic mess.

The Asia-Pacific region has made steady progress against malaria during the pandemic, but gaps remain in some high-burden countries.

Source link The Asia-Pacific region has made steady progress against malaria during the pandemic, but gaps remain in some high-burden countries.

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