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World Malaria Day: 10 facts about malaria

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World Malaria Day is marked April 25 every year to raise awareness about malaria and deliberate on critical discussions/ actions centred on making the world malaria-free.

The 2017 theme for World Malaria Day is “A push for prevention”. The 2017 theme buttresses the fact that prevention remains the best cure for malaria.

As the whole world marks the World Malaria day today, let us look take a look at some important facts about Malaria. The essence is to be more aware and informed about the malaria scourge so as to be more proactive in preventing it.

  1. Malaria is caused by parasites that are transmitted to people through the bites of infected mosquitoes.
  2. Malaria affects 3.3 billion people, or half of the world’s population, in 106 countries and territories.
  3. Malaria is the 3rd leading cause of death for children under five years worldwide, after pneumonia and diarrheal disease.
  4. Malaria is the 2nd leading cause of death from infectious diseases in Africa, after HIV/AIDS.
  5. Malaria causes anemia which may require blood transfusions, a procedure that increases the risk for HIV infection where universal blood screening is yet to be achieved.
  6. The best cure for malaria is prevention.
  7. Malaria kills one child every 30 seconds, about 3,000 children every day in Africa.
  8. Malaria predominantly affects people who live, work, and sleep in unscreened houses where mosquitoes can easily enter through open eaves and windows.
  9. The majority of the malaria deaths (85%) occurred in children under five years of age.
  10. Sleeping under insecticide-treated mosquito nets protects against malaria.

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