On this World AIDS Day 2007, Malaria Consortium calls for increased partnership working and collaboration between malaria and HIV advocates in order to reduce the burden of the diseases.
Malaria Consortium’s Mobilising for Malaria advocacy projects, currently implemented in three European countries and fifteen African countries, encourage AIDS civil society organisations to be partners. A recent malaria advocacy project launched in the Congo will be implemented by member organisations of the Africa AIDS Network which will join advocacy efforts in the fight against malaria.
Together malaria and HIV cause more than 4 million deaths a year. Both diseases are also primarily concentrated in the same regions of Africa, Asia and South America. Approximately 90% of the malaria cases occur in sub-Saharan Africa where the burden of HIV is also the highest. People living with HIV are particularly vulnerable to malaria, especially pregnant women and newborns. Approximately one million pregnancies are complicated by both malaria and HIV infection in sub-Saharan Africa annually. Both infections have also been associated with maternal and infant mortality.
Sunil Mehra, Malaria Consortium’s Executive Director, said: “Partnership working and information exchange between HIV and malaria advocates will strengthen the impact of advocacy efforts to tackle the burden of diseases that kill more than 4 million people a year.”