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Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 258 -- Malaria.

Malaria. A Big Deal-

Nothing against AIDS, but malaria is the global scourge most responsible for suffering and misery.

Some facts about malaria:

* Forty-one percent of the world's population live in areas where malaria is transmitted (e.g., parts of Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Central and South America, Hispaniola, and Oceania).

* An estimated 700,000-2.7 million persons die of malaria each year, 75% of them African children.

* In areas of Africa with high malaria transmission, an estimated 990,000 people died of malaria in 1995 – over 2700 deaths per day, or 2 deaths per minute.

* In 2002, malaria was the fourth cause of death in children in developing countries, after perinatal conditions (conditions occurring around the time of birth), lower respiratory infections (pneumonias), and diarrheal diseases. Malaria caused 10.7% of all children's deaths in developing countries.

* In Malawi in 2001, malaria accounted for 22% of all hospital admissions, 26% of all outpatient visits, and 28% of all hospital deaths. Not all people go to hospitals when sick or having a baby, and many die at home. Thus the true numbers of death and disease caused by malaria are likely much higher.

But there's some possibly good news:

The fight against malaria has scored a major victory. The U.S. Agency for International Development has elected to use nearly half of its budget to buy proven interventions against the disease, which affects 500 million people and kills more than a million children around the world each year. USAID has promised $15 million expressly for insecticides, recognizing their unique effectiveness in reducing the burden of malaria. The agency has opted to streamline more funding to fewer countries in order to improve accountability and focus on results.

This announcement follows USAID chief Andrew Natsios' resignation and marks an ideological shift in the agency's approach to malaria control. Since it joined the World Health Organization's global effort to roll back the disease in 1998, it has devoted most of its budget to U.S. consultants whose technical advice emphasized mosquito nets and largely ignored indoor residual spraying. This has proved a losing strategy. Recent estimates of malaria rates show they have increased substantially over the past decade.

Gotta use that DDT. It's far too important to play the vague "environment" card. Way too many people are dying or otherwise suffering because of this disease.

DDT works:

There is no guarantee that the money USAID has committed toward indoor residual spraying will be used to buy DDT. This chemical is the cheapest and most effective insecticide available for IRS. It brought malaria rates down by 75 percent in both Zambia and South Africa. A spokesman said USAID has previously followed environmentalists' ideology in avoiding the chemical, pointing to exaggerated and often unfounded accounts of its harmful effect on humans. Yet the science remains on the side of using DDT. Marginal side effects do not prevent the use of pharmaceuticals in the U.S. to treat far less devastating diseases than malaria. If asked, an African mother would rather risk a few squirts of DDT on the wall to save her child's life or to prevent an average of 300 mosquito bites a night during the rainy season.

Malaria is also correlated with poverty and poor governance:


Malaria is not something the world has to live with. Singapore, for example, has essentially eradicated malaria-- and thrived. It's possible to do it. We have the know-how. We have the DDT. We just have to get past the unreasonable environmental concerns.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: Leisure Time.

Posted by Will Franklin · 4 February 2006 09:41 PM


Isn't there something else used for that besides DDT these days?
Hey farmer,farmer put away your DDT now... Pave paradise put up a parking lot...Joni Mitchel...
I love that song!

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at February 5, 2006 08:58 AM

Okay...lets say we could put a bunch of bats and different birds that could encourage DDT to be used at a lower level??? I really believe DDT was over used at one point in our country. It was used to make the fruit and vegetables appear more beautiful.

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at February 5, 2006 09:14 AM