24.04.2020 In 2018, 94 percent of the 405.000 malaria deaths worldwide occurred in Africa, including two thirds children under the age of five. For 2020, the World Health Organization fears that in the worst case, just under 770.000 people in Africa will die from malaria - that would be the highest value in 20 years. The WHO attributes this prognosis to the lack of distribution of mosquito nets and a clear cut in access to medicine, in each case due to the measures taken against the spread of the coronavirus. The WHO therefore calls for the opening of airports and other supply channels for mosquito nets and medication.
"We have to guarantee that the malaria measures in Africa are not replaced by the measures against the coronavirus, but are instead adapted to the need for social distancing," emphasizes the WHO Regional Director for Africa, Matshidiso Moeti, referring to this equipping medical personnel with protective clothing. In the long term, WHO's hope also applies to the fight against malaria in vaccine research: Because while the world is feverishly waiting for a vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, a pilot program for one has been running for a year Vaccination against malaria in Malawi, Ghana and Kenya.