GLIDE CEO comments on China being certified malaria-free by the WHO

30 June 2021 – Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that China has been certified malaria-free, following a 70-year effort. China has now maintained zero indigenous malaria cases for more than three consecutive years, down from 30 million cases per year in the 1940s — becoming the first country in the WHO Western Pacific Region to be awarded a malaria-free certification in more than three decades.

Following the announcement by WHO, Simon Bland, CEO of GLIDE, comments:

“With more countries than ever before on the verge of eliminating malaria, China’s success helps sustain momentum in the global fight to put an end to one of the ancient scourges of mankind.

“However, the sad reality is that malaria is still endemic in 87 countries and territories across the world – with Africa carrying 93% of the global malaria burden, where the disease kills nearly 400,000 people every year. Worse, the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to set back progress on malaria elimination by decades.

“China achieved the remarkable milestone of malaria elimination by leveraging technology, implementing robust disease surveillance strategies, and firmly integrating the malaria control programme into the country’s health system. Now, it is essential that China supports malaria-endemic countries to adapt this blueprint to their national contexts. We call on global health partners around the world to recommit to our shared goal of a world without malaria—innovation and global cooperation are vital if we want to rid the world of malaria.”

Read the full press release from WHO here.