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Malaria Top UK Priority for MDGs

23 September 2010

London, 22 September: “I will now be looking at all DFID’s programmes to see how we can build the prevention and treatment of malaria into everything we do.”

This is the message from the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) chief, Andrew Mitchell, after Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg announced to assembled world leaders an ambitious UK pledge to meet the MDGs, which will be framed by targeted interventions in malaria and maternal mortality.

Speaking at the United Nations Millennium Development Goal Summit in New York, Clegg pledged that the UK will help halve the number of deaths caused by malaria in at least 10 African countries by 2015.

“Tackling malaria will mean that millions of people, and especially children, will be saved from its crippling effects, enabling them to work, feed their families and send their children to school,” said Mitchell, Secretary of State for International Development. “Combating this disease is also one of the best investments money can buy – as little as £2 a year can be enough to save a child’s life.”

Jeremy Lefroy MP, Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases, welcomed the Deputy Prime Minister’s commitment to earmark as much as £500 million for malaria control every year. “This will give malaria the boost that it needs and should encourage other countries to honour their commitments to continue the fight against this dreadful disease,” he said.

The precise figure, however, and the countries and programmes to which it will be allocated will be decided after the completion of a consultancy process and full review DFID’s country programmes.

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To read the official UN outcome paper of the MDG summit, please click here.


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