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Research, Innovation and Education Towards Malaria Elimination: Improving Quality of Life in Africa

  • Christiaan de JagerEmail author
  • Taneshka Kruger
  • Cheryl Tosh
Chapter
Part of the International Handbooks of Quality-of-Life book series (IHQL)

Abstract

Malaria is one of the African continent’s major health challenges. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 80% of the 216 million global malaria cases reported in 2016 occurred in sub-Saharan countries and India. Eighty percent of the 445,000 global fatalities occurred in these same countries. Eliminating malaria is intrinsically linked to the quality of life of communities affected by malaria. Communities need to perceive malaria as a significant health problem in order to make the behavioral changes required to successfully control vectors and parasites. Concurrently, governance and policies need to be in place to support health care and manage surveillance. We report on current initiatives in the Limpopo Province of South Africa that are connecting communities, researchers and policy makers. Novel materials are being developed to control mosquitoes in homes and various educational initiatives strive to teach school children about malaria control through music, dance and children’s books. Mobile technology is being harnessed to spread information about malaria outbreaks and high risk areas. Researchers are focused on understanding the impact of invasive vector control strategies on local communities and are trying to understand the dynamics of insecticide and drug resistance. Eliminating malaria in African communities will reduce the burden of illness and mortality, releasing resources that can be channeled towards improving quality of life.

Keywords

Malaria Quality of life Communities Vector control Poverty Health care Africa 

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christiaan de Jager
    • 1
    Email author
  • Taneshka Kruger
    • 2
  • Cheryl Tosh
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Health Systems and Public Health (SHSPH), University of Pretoria Institute for Sustainable Malaria Control (UP ISMC), Faculty of Health SciencesUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.SHSPH, UP ISMC, Faculty of Health SciencesUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  3. 3.Faculty of Health SciencesUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa

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