World Malaria Day

World Malaria Day

News: The day is observed every year on 25th April.
 It was established by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2007 to raise awareness about malaria.
Theme - 'Time to deliver zero malaria: invest, innovate, implement'.
 As per the World Malaria Report 2022, the disease claimed the lives of an estimated 6,19,000 people in 2021.
 The report also highlighted that India has shown a significant decline in malaria cases and deaths in past 10 years.

What is Malaria?
 According to WHO, Malaria is a life-threatening disease spread to humans by some types of mosquitoes. It is mostly found in tropical countries. It is preventable and curable.

 It mostly spreads to people through the bites of some infected female Anopheles mosquitoes. Blood transfusion and contaminated needles may also transmit malaria.
 There are 5 Plasmodium parasite species that cause malaria in humans and 2 of these species – P. falciparum and P. vivax – pose the greatest threat.

What are its symptoms?
 The most common early symptoms of malaria are fever, headache and chills.
 Some types of malaria can cause severe illness and death. Infants, children under 5 years, pregnant women, travellers and people with HIV or AIDS are at higher risk.
 Severe symptoms - extreme tiredness and fatigue, impaired consciousness, multiple convulsions, difficulty breathing, dark or bloody urine, jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin) and abnormal bleeding.

Is there any vaccine available?
 Since October 2021, WHO recommends broad use of the RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine among children living in regions with moderate to high P. falciparum malaria transmission. The vaccine has been shown to significantly reduce malaria, and deadly severe malaria, among young children.

What are the efforts taken by India?
 National Framework for Malaria Elimination 2016-2030 - Eliminate malaria (zero indigenous cases) throughout the entire country by 2030. Maintain malaria–free status in areas where malaria transmission has been interrupted and prevent re-introduction of malaria.
 Malaria Elimination Research Alliance-India (MERA-India) – Started by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) with other partners.

Global efforts:
 Global Malaria Program – By WHO.
 E- 2025 initative – Launched to halt the transmission of malaria in 25 identified countries by 2025.

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