|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
SECRETARY-GENERAL ANNOUNCES ‘ROLL BACK MALARIA PARTNERSHIP’ ON WORLD MALARIA DAY
TO HALT MALARIA DEATHS BY ENSURING UNIVERSAL COVERAGE BY END OF 2010
Following is the text of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s video message on World Malaria Day, today, 25 April:
I spent the past week in West Africa. Like many who have travelled to malaria-endemic regions, I knew that I could protect myself from contracting the disease just by taking relatively simple preventive pills and using a bednet.
And yet, in the time it takes me to read this message, six more children will die of the disease. Malaria still kills more than 1 million people every year. The toll it is taking is unacceptable -- all the more so because malaria is preventable and treatable.
In recent years, several African countries have made dramatic strides in malaria control. But the most affected nations remain off track to reach the goal of halting and reversing the incidence of the disease. As we pass the midpoint in the race towards the Millennium Development Goals, we desperately need to step up our efforts to roll back malaria.
That is why today, together with the Roll Back Malaria Partnership, and my Special Envoy on Malaria, I am putting forward a bold but achievable vision. The aim is to put a stop to malaria deaths by ensuring universal coverage by the end of 2010.
This initiative will offer indoor residual spraying, and bednets treated with long-lasting insecticide, to all people at risk, especially women and children in Africa.
It will ensure that all public health facilities have access to effective malaria treatment and diagnosis.
It will provide ways to train, and retain, community health workers dealing with malaria.
And it will encourage research and development for longer-term efforts to control, eliminate and eradicate malaria.
We have the resources and the know-how. But we have less than 1,000 days before the end of 2010.
So we urgently need your leadership and commitment. Let’s get to work.
* *** *