WHO: global malaria case decline slows

  • WHO
  • WHO
  • 5 Dec 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • Globally, more pregnant women and children are protected against malaria, but the rate of decline has slowed.

Why this matters

  • Promote use of effective vector control (e.g., insecticide-treated nets, indoor residual spraying), preventive antimalarials.
  • Use seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC) during the high-transmission rainy season in children aged
  • Consider intermittent preventive treatment (IPT) in infants. 
  • Integrate community case management for malaria, pneumonia, and diarrhea.

Key points

  • Estimated 228 (95% CI, 206-258) million malaria cases reported worldwide in 2018.
  • 93%, 3.4%, 2.1% reported in WHO African, South-East (SE) Asia, Eastern Mediterranean regions, respectively.
  • Overall incidence declined from 71 to 57/1000 at-risk population.
  • Plasmodium falciparum accounted for 99.7% of overall cases, 50% SE Asian, 71% Eastern Mediterranean, 65% Western Pacific regions.
  • 53% of Plasmodium vivax burden in SE Asian regions; 75% of cases in the Americas.
  • Malaria death declined from 585,000 (2010) to 405,000 (2018).
  • Children accounted for 67% (272,000) of deaths.
  • 2018: 11 million pregnancies, 872,000 children born with low birth weight, 24 million infected with Plasmodium falciparum, 1.8 million with severe anemia.
  • Only 31% of eligible Sub-Saharan African women received ≥3 IPT doses; 18% using antenatal care do not receive any dose. 
  • 62% of children eligible for the preventive medicine benefited from it.