The global effort to fight Malaria had reached a substantial level of commitment with the recent announcement at the Liverpool School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine: Chancellor Georges Osbourne and Bill Gates announced a joint commitment of £3 billion over the next five years to significantly reduce deaths from malaria by 90% by 2030 with the goal of ultimately eradicating the disease.
Malaria is a threat to life, health and well-being, nearly 200 million people are infected with malaria each year. That infection rate is more than three times the population of the UK! The last 2 decades saw a tremendous global effort to contribute to the eradication of malaria. In order to succeed in such endeavour more capitals are to be engaged to encourage creative approaches as well as subsequent financial resources.
The UK had always been a real catalyst to unite and direct efforts to fight malaria on a global scale ever since Ronald Ross’s discovery that mosquitoes transmit malaria back in 1897 that earned him the Nobel Prize. Thanks to a concerted international push there has been extraordinary progress the last 15 years to save over six million lives, mainly young children and pregnant women!
James Whiting, Malaria No More UK’s Executive Director reacts: “We wholeheartedly welcome the UK’s announcement and ongoing leadership in the malaria campaign. Today’s news will have a profound and lasting impact on the lives of countless families across Africa and sends a powerful signal to political leaders internationally to give urgent priority to the malaria fight in 2016.”
David Schellenberg, Professor of Malaria and International Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine adds: “This is tremendous news for the UK scientific community as our work on innovation is vital if we’re to beat malaria. I have no doubt that it will enable creation of new tools and strategies to stay one step ahead of the mosquito, one of the tiniest, yet most deadly and adaptable creatures on earth”.
Recent studies have shown investments offer more than £15 back on every £1 invested! Chancellor Georges Osbourne and Bill Gates’ contribution is certainly a major accelerator to accomplish one the greatest public health challenge many developing countries are facing and will greatly contribute to get sooner to a malaria free world!