ADDIS ABEBA – Ethiopia has launched ‘Zero Malaria Starts with Me’ campaign to help eliminate the disease, which infects millions of people each year via mosquitoes.
The awareness campaign was launched by the deputy prime minister Demeke Mekonnen in Addis Ababa.
Representatives from all regional states and two city administrations as well as donors also attended the launching ceremony of the campaign to end the disease that killed far more human beings than war.
Ethiopia’s ministry of health said for the past five years, with a collective effort managed to decrease Malaria morbidity and mortality by 50% and 60% respectively.
And “yet, each second 2 people get infected with Malaria.”, said Dr. Amir Ahmed, minister of health.
“Hence it is crucial to revitalize our commitment to achieve Ethiopia’s plan of making 239 Woredas malaria-free by 2022 and the whole country free of malaria by the year 2030,” he added.
The latest effort involves calling on political leaders, the private sector and communities to do all they can to improve prevention, diagnosis and treatment.
Ambassador of United States, a major supporter of the health sector, Michael Raynor called the campaign “particularly appropriate and well-chosen”.
“Even today, despite all of the progress humanity has made, malaria still kills hundreds of thousands of people around the world each year,” the ambassador said.
“But the good news is that global efforts to fight malaria and malaria-caused deaths are working, and Ethiopia is at the forefront of that success,” he added.
Since 2007, the United States has invested more than 442 million U.S. dollars through the President’s Malaria Initiative or PMI to help Ethiopia control the disease.
Ambassador Raynor assured Ethiopia saying the United States “has been, and remains, Ethiopia’s steadfast partner” in eliminating the health challenge.
Malaria is caused by the Plasmodium parasite, which is transmitted to humans by the bites of infected mosquitoes. WHO estimates that nearly half of the world’s 7.5 billion population was at risk of malaria as of 2017.
A majority of malaria cases and deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa, according to WHO.
Photo Caption: (From L) Ambassador Raynor, health minister Dr. Amir and Deputy prime minister Demeke attended the launching event on Tuesday