Malaria

FY2017 Funding Recommendation:  
$874 million

 

Funding History

       Enacted   

       President's FY2017 Request   

       InterAction's FY2017 Recommendation


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Justification

  

 Key Facts

In 2015 alone, there were an estimated 214 million new cases of malaria, resulting in an estimated 438,000 deaths worldwide.   Children under five account for 69% of these fatalities; one child dies every minute for lack of simple, cost-effective tools such as an insecticide-treated net or a simple course of treatment. Endemic in 96 countries, malaria’s economic and social impacts are staggering as well. Direct costs such as absenteeism, health care and treatment, and premature death have an estimated price tag of at least $12 billion per year, demonstrating the vital need to continue to invest in prevention and elimination efforts.

However, there has been progress. U.S. investments through the President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund) have significantly furthered efforts to eliminate the disease. PMI also collaborates with other U.S. agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Department of Defense to create innovative tools and technologies needed to deliver future successes.

  • Since its launch in 2005, PMI has distributed more than 102 million insecticide-treated bed nets to prevent infection, and more than 318 million life-saving antimalarial treatments.

  • PMI has also provided protection for over 18 million people by spraying more than 5 million houses with insecticides (and provided 13 million preventative treatments for pregnant women).

  • To date, the original 15 PMI focus countries have seen reductions in childhood mortality from malaria ranging from 18-55%.

  • As of mid-2015, the Global Fund had distributed 548 million insecticide-treated bed nets to protect against malaria, and had treated 515 million cases of the disease.

  • U.S. funding supports the development of new malaria vaccine candidates, anti-malarial drugs, new insecticides, and other malaria-related research with multilateral donors.

An expansion of malaria interventions between 2000 and 2015 helped reduce malaria mortality rates by 60% and malaria incidence by 37% globally. While this progress should be acknowledged, a recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO) indicates that more work is needed to sustain progress in the fight against this deadly disease.

Malaria prevention and treatment programs have been a model of success. By sharing responsibility, we are saving millions of lives while simultaneously strengthening emerging economies and health systems. Malaria interventions provide a significant return on investment, costing only between $5-8 per case but creating billions in savings. These benefits are increased with the attainment of certain milestones and will result in a 40-fold return on investment when the 2030 targets, recommended by the WHO are achieved. In addition to this financial return, these investments will contribute to significant reductions in extreme poverty, through increases in agricultural output, education, and women’s empowerment.

In FY2016, the U.S. invested $674 million in the PMI, the second largest funding stream for malaria behind the Global Fund. As we push towards elimination of malaria in certain areas – and thus towards the end of recurring costs – it is crucial that funding be increased to achieve this goal. InterAction’s FY2017 funding request of $874 million seeks to ensure that total U.S. support for malaria programming continues to increase and reflects the Administration’s desire to repurpose $129 million from the remaining Ebola emergency funding to combat malaria. Eliminating malaria as rapidly as possible would be the most cost effective course of action, since the cost of continuing the battle against malaria will only increase in the future.

Success Story

Rural Communities in Angola: Recognizing and Responding to Malaria

While her mother was out working, Neoránia António, 3 years old, started moaning and tossing in her sleep. Her 16-year-old brother, Pascal, noticed she had a high fever and brought her immediately to the health center in Kwanza Norte, Angola.

“I was informed that when someone has fever, we should not wait for the following day but we should go directly to the center,” said Pascal. “So, when my mom went to the field, my sister was moaning with fever, I decided come to the health center.”

Pascal knew to bring Neoránia in immediately because trained community members have begun publicly sharing information about preventing and treating malaria, including what steps to take when symptoms are observed.  These community mobilizers were trained by World Vision and the Ministry of Health through the Malaria Treatment and Prevention in Kwanza Norte project, funded by USAID, to reduce by 70% the number of malaria cases, malaria related mortality, and the socio-economic burden of malaria.

At the health center, the nurse took steps to bring Neoránia’s fever down (applied cool, damp cloth, administered medication) and then tested her for malaria. The results were positive.

“The nurse gave me Coartem [antiparasitic drug used to treat malaria] and explained how to give the medication at home,” said Pascal. “This has not happened in years.”

Before World Vision and the Ministry of Health began the project, wait times were very long at health centers, and laboratory tests were not performed, leaving nurses to prescribe, and patients to pay for, medication that might not be needed. Now all clinics, health centers, and hospitals not only provide tests and treatment, but also educate patients on the prevention, symptoms, and treatment of malaria and other diseases.

“Many people didn't know the signs and symptom of malaria and much less knew that when they have symptoms they should go directly to the health center. Also, they don’t know how to prevent the disease,” Pascal explained. “Now whenever I come in they give us lectures on how we can prevent this disease by using mosquito nets and burying garbage and plugging the holes that can attract mosquitos.” 

World Vision also continuously trains technicians to improve their awareness in diagnosis, treatment and prevention of malaria and other diseases.

“I have high expectations for the future,” said Pascal. “My dream is for my siblings and I to study and become nurses.”

Photo: Borges Bumba Bongue/World Vision

 

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