Approximately half of the world’s population is at risk of malaria, particularly those living in lower-income countries. This disease is curable and more importantly preventable, so why does a child continue die of malaria every 30 seconds?
A thematic series entitled ‘Towards malaria elimination’ published in Malaria Journal provides encouraging news about what is achievable with an integrated malaria elimination programme. The series provides a platform to catalyze all malaria research, reviews and debate, aiming to lead to malaria elimination and eradication in endemic areas.
One of the first articles published as part of the series reports on how effective measures combining four major control methods have produced a rapid decline in malaria morbidity and mortality on the island of Príncipe.
The authors argue that to achieve elimination even more integrated programmes must be encouraged and sustained. Whilst countries such as Tunisia and the Maldives have proven that elimination of malaria from entire nations is possible, can these complex programmes be kept up in economically unstable countries?
Malaria Journal’s Editor-in-Chief Marcel Hommel, and the series Guest Editor, Marcel Tanner, explain that although significant gains have been made, a further coordinated effort by scientists, public health professionals, programme managers, funders and policy makers is still needed to progress malaria elimination further forward.