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Critical conversation with Health Minister to reduce burden of malaria on citizens of Uganda

10 May 2024

This week, Malaria Consortium’s team in Uganda and Chief Executive, Dr James Tibenderana, engaged in key discussions with Uganda’s Ministry of Health on partnership approaches to accelerate progress towards eliminating malaria in the country.

Group pose for a photoUganda Health Minister, Dr Jane Ruth Acheng (front centre), with Dr James Tibenderana (front third from left), Dr Godfrey Magumba (front second from right) and other stakeholders at a meeting at the Ministry of Health, Uganda, May 2024

Health Minister, Dr Jane Ruth Acheng, met with Dr Godfrey Magumba, the East & Southern Africa Programmes Director for Malaria Consortium, and Dr Tibenderana, to discuss the introduction of new malaria preventative measures including seasonal and perennial malaria chemoprevention, alongside the introduction of the malaria vaccine, as well as the development of a new elimination strategy.

Health Minister, Dr Jane Ruth Acheng, expressed her enthusiasm for developing a new malaria strategy, which shifts the focus from reduction to elimination and eradication. She stated, “With the strong political support from the president and parliament, now is the ideal time to develop and implement a robust malaria elimination and eradication strategy. We are eager to begin this vital work immediately.”

In 2022, the World Health Organization reported an estimated 12.7 million malaria cases and over 17,556 estimated deaths in the country. Dr Tibenderana emphasised the significant impact of malaria reduction both on the health of the population and on Uganda’s development, noting, “Each step we take towards eliminating malaria not only enhances public health but also bolsters Uganda’s economy. Indeed, every 10 percent reduction in malaria burden leads to an approximate 0.3 percent increase in GDP growth. This correlation underscores the profound economic benefits of effective malaria control measures.”

The discussions taking place this week highlight the critical value of strategic partnerships and collaborations in tackling one of the world’s deadliest diseases. As Dr Tibenderana noted in a recent blog post, reaching malaria elimination requires a concerted effort from diverse partnerships, harnessing collective expertise and resources, to fully address the complexity of the challenge.

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