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MalariaIn observance, the Department of Health commemorates annually every 25th of April and recognizes global efforts in controlling malaria.  Its grails to keep malaria high on the political agenda, mobilize additional resources, and empower communities.  

World Malaria Day was conceived from Africa Malaria Day in 2008, which has been observed since 2001 by African governments. The observance served as a time to assess progress toward goals aimed at controlling malaria and diminishing its mortality in African countries.  And later promoted to discern the presence of malaria in countries worldwide and to bring greater awareness to the global fight against the disease.

According to the global malaria report, the Western Pacific Region had an estimated 1.7 million cases in 2019 with a 52% reduction in the number of deaths for decades. The Philippines has also remarkably decreased the incidence of malaria by 87% from 48,569 in 2003 to 6,120 cases in 2020 and has also reported a 98% reduction in mortality due to malaria. Malaria has been reported to be the third-largest killer of children between the ages of 1 month up to 5 years old, following pneumonia and diarrhea.

Malaria is blood-borne, endo-parasitic(protozoan)infection. It is usually transmitted through the bite of a specific malaria-carrying mosquito which portal entry and exit in the skin and the target is the blood. 

The symptoms usually start approximately 9 to 14 days after the bite of an infective mosquito. However, in some types of malaria, the symptoms may appear one to several months after the infective mosquito bite. The symptoms include high fever, headache, chills, shivers, nausea, and vomiting but it may worsen to generalized convulsion, severe vomiting and diarrhea, delirium and impaired consciousness, followed by coma and possibly death.
Key measures for malaria precautionary measures are awareness of endemic areas, bite prevention through wearing of long-sleeved clothes and using of insect repellants and mosquito nets, and prophylactic treatment when traveling to endemic areas. If symptoms of malaria are observed, seek immediate medical consultation. Enough food and nutrition can also help increase immune system during the illness stage.

As the country participates in the global celebration of World Malaria Day 2022, the DOH and the collaborative partners and stakeholders including the National Nutrition Council Caraga are called for continued support to the program and to remain on track with the 2030 target, Zero Malaria. #JJCarillo