Can We Defeat Malaria?

By Kaleigh Rogers, Reporter, VICE

In May, VICE reporter Kaleigh Rogers visited Tanzania to report on malaria, and stopped by the Ithna Asheri clinic in Arusha, where a PSI intervention helped train clinicians and lab techs in using malaria Rapid Diagnostic Tests (mRDTs) to properly diagnosis and treat fever cases. Below are excerpts from her articles on Motherboard, an online magazine launched by VICE.

What It’s Like to Have Malaria 50 Times
Kaleigh Rogers describes the heavy burden malaria places on communities across countries still working to eradicate the disease.

Tanga, Tanzania

The first time Dr. John Lusingu got malaria, he was 16. His immune system was completely naïve to the parasite, and it hit him hard, racking his body with fever, rigors, joint pain, diarrhea, and blurred vision. He had to be hospitalized.

Lusingu was treated and recovered, but soon after, he suffered another malaria infection. Then another. For the next 12 years, Lusingu continued to suffer repeated bouts of malaria every year, up to ten times a year.

Now 50 years old, Lusingu has had malaria more than 50 times in his life. In Tanzania, where he lives, this is the norm.

To read the full article, click here.

The True Cost of Malaria
This shareable infographic illustrates the history and cost of eradicating malaria. 

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Graphic: Sarah MacReading/Motherboard

Will We Defeat Malaria?
We’ve made huge strides in the fight to end malaria worldwide, but there is still work to be done. Can the global community push through and finish the fight in the coming decades?

One thing that’s hard to grasp in much of the developed world is how normal malaria is. This isn’t to minimize the severity of this disease, it’s just that for those who live in endemic regions, coming down with a bout of malaria is as commonplace as catching a cold is in the US, and most of the time, people get better. There were 214 million cases of malaria last year, and 99 percent recovered.

But unlike the common cold, malaria kills someone nearly once a minute. See, with hundreds of millions of cases, that means nearly half a million people still die every year from a disease that we’ve already successfully eliminated from much of the planet. We’ve made a lot of progress—fifteen years ago, twice as many people died from malaria each year—but there’s still a long way to go, and plenty of roadblocks in the way.

To read the full article, click here.