The review calls for a global investment of $34bn (£28bn) over the next 11 years to provide healthcare in malarial regions. Photograph: Jennifer Huxta/The Guardian
Malaria will not be eradicated in the foreseeable future even though it is achievable and would save millions of lives, according to World Health Organization (WHO) experts following a three-year review.
The WHO remains committed to the “disappearance of every single malaria parasite from the face of the planet”, as it has been since the UN organisation was launched in 1948, said Dr Pedro Alonso, the director of its global malaria programme.
But the experts warned in their review that there must not be a repeat of past disasters. The WHO’s first global malaria eradication programme that lasted from 1955 until 1969 rid several countries of the disease, but was not implemented in sub-Saharan Africa, the region most badly affected.
“Falling short of eradication led to a sense of defeat, the neglect of malaria control efforts and abandonment of research into new tools and approaches,” the review stated. “Malaria came back with a vengeance; millions of deaths followed. It took decades for the world to be ready to fight back against malaria.”