Malaria

Malaria is a potentially life threatening disease caused by parasites (Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium malariae and Plasmodium ovale) that are transmitted through the bite of infected Anopheles mosquitoes.

In 2016, 91 countries and territories had ongoing malaria transmission and an estimated 3.2 billion people – nearly half the world’s population – were at risk of malaria. The year saw an estimated 216 million cases and 445000 deaths due to malaria worldwide.

WHO estimates that India accounts for 89 % malaria cases in South-East Asia. According to National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), 1 090 724 cases and 331 deaths due to malaria were reported during 2016 in the country.

Malaria is entirely preventable and treatable. Use of long lasting insecticide treated nets (LLINs) by people at risk and indoor residual spraying (IRS) with insecticide to control the vector mosquitoes are useful. Early diagnosis and complete treatment of malaria reduces disease and prevents deaths. It also contributes to reducing malaria transmission. The best available treatment is artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT).

Increased malaria prevention and control measures have dramatically reduced malaria across many countries, including India. The incidence rate of malaria is estimated to have decreased by 18% globally between 2010 and 2016. In 2016, 7% decline in total malaria cases and 16% decline in total malaria deaths was recorded in India as compared to 2015.

The Government of India launched the National Framework for Malaria Elimination 2016-2030 in February 2016 and the National Strategic Plan for Malaria Elimination 2017-2022 in July 2017 with WHO support.

India has a vision of a malaria free country by 2027 and elimination by 2030.

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