Why, you may ask, the focus on malaria and Africa? Here are some numbers that will help you understand.
- 250 million is the annual number of cases of malaria infection around the world
- 90 percent of all malaria deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa
- Every 60 seconds a child dies from malaria
- There are 8 Millennium Development Goals and the NetsforLife® program partnership most particularly addresses #4, #5 and #6
Malaria is commonly associated with poverty, and can indeed be a cause of poverty and a major hindrance to economic development. Focusing on the disease enables progress on all the MDGs, for progress cannot be made when people are constantly battling sickness and death.
Malaria Facts from the World Health Organization
- There are nearly one million deaths from malaria each year
- An African child has 1.6 to 5.4 malaria fever episodes yearly
- Malaria is a mosquito-borne illness, and so controlling malaria-bearing mosquitoes is critical
- Bed nets, especially those treated with insecticide, are effective protection for children and pregnant women
- Malaria costs an estimated $12 billion in lost productivity in Africa annually