From the Department for International Development
BRITAIN BACKS WAR ON MALARIA
17 May 1998
The Prime Minister today fired the first salvo in the Worldwide
battle against Malaria by backing an international initiative
to wipe out the disease.
Speaking at the G8 summit in Birmingham, Mr. Blair pledged £60
million from the Department for International Development (DFID)
for the World Health Organization's Roll Back Malaria initiative
(RBM) which aims to dramatically cut the number of deaths and
illness caused by Malaria deaths by the year 2015.
Mr. Blair was joined by International Development Secretary Clare
Short in paying tribute to Dr. Gro Harlem Brundland, Director
General Elect of WHO, who promised this week to make Malaria a
priority for her leadership.
"I congratulate Dr. Brundtland on making Malaria the focus of
so much energy" said Ms. Shun.
"Now is the time for the world to act to fight this terrible disease
- which afflicts the developing world so greatly. I am proud that
Britain has taken the lead in devoting more resources to its reduction."
"Every 30 seconds, a child somewhere dies of Malaria. It kills
indiscriminately, it puts an enormous strain on health services,
and prevents the developing world from escaping from grinding
poverty. The Roll Back Malaria initiative presents a huge opportunity
to make a difference."
Malaria currently kills more than one million people each year
- 90% of these are in Africa. A further 500 million contract the
disease each year
The RBM initiative could halve the number of deaths caused by
Malaria by the year 2010, and halve that number again five years
Notes to Editors
I. RBM Is a priority initiative in the programme Of the new Director-General
(Mrs. Gro Harlem Brundtland) who was elected at the World Health
Assembly in Geneva on 13 May.
2. RBM will mobilize and co-ordinate a global coalition including
leaders from Malaria-ridden countries, the WHO, United Nations
agencies, the World Bank, scientific institutions, private sector
bodies and governments World-wide.
3. RBM aims to revitalize the global effort against Malaria by
seeking to: increase the numbers of people able to have access
to effective treatment and means of protection: increase the
capacity of national authorities to handle Malaria, through improved
surveillance, diagnosis, planning and management: increase regional
and global capacities to support national requirements intensify
efforts to develop new pharmaceutical products for prevention
4. RBM Will promote the use of and Wider dissemination of, existing
techniques for treatment and prevention of Malaria including:
- improved treatment of disease through proper diagnosis and treatment.
- better protection - use of insecticide treated mosquito nets
which promise to cut death rates.
- control of mosquitoes - with environmental development and industrial
- improved surveillance of disease and the mosquito.
5. For more information, contact the Press Office, DFID, Tel:
Issued by Information Department. Department For International
94 Victoria St., London SW1E 5JL. Tel; 0171-917- 0950. Fax: O171-917
Internet: http:// www.dfid.gov.uk
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