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India stands with Asia Pacific nations in drive for malaria"-free region

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APLMA Malaria Elimination Roadmap: Let's hope promises come true!
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Citizen News Service (CNS)

(CNS): Prime Minister Narendra Modi has joined other Asia Pacific Leaders in taking a concrete step closer to defeating malaria. Along with the 17 other East Asia Summit (EAS) Leaders meeting in Malaysia this past weekend, he endorsed a detailed plan to eliminate the disease throughout the region by 2030.

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The APLMA Malaria Elimination Roadmap presents six essential actions that leaders can support to accelerate progress towards malaria elimination. In endorsing the Roadmap, Prime Minister Modi and regional Leaders expressed their determination to defeat malaria:

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"We are committed to the Roadmap's six priority areas and called for a rapid and sustained scale"up effort in the Mekong region to prevent the spread of drug"resistant malaria," read the official EAS Chairman's statement issued after the Summit.

Inclusion of malaria in EAS Leaders' discussions on crucial issues such as regional security, territorial disputes and economic partnership indicates the importance they assign to tackling the disease.

"Asia Pacific is facing a silent malaria emergency -- one that could have a disastrous impact on the region as a whole, as well as on global health security," said Dr Nafsiah Mboi, Envoy of the Asia Pacific Leaders Malaria Alliance (APLMA). "Having halved deaths from malaria in just 15 years, the failure of the most effective antimalarial drugs in the Greater Mekong Subregion threatens much of that hard"won progress."

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Asia Pacific malaria elimination decreases the impact of the disease for over half the world's population -- and it also removes the threat of emerging drug"resistant malaria for the other half.

The plan was developed in close consultation with leaders and national malaria programmes throughout Asia Pacific, and with the help of technical experts from the Asian Development Bank, the World Health Organization (WHO) and many other partner organizations. If fully implemented between now and 2030, the plan will save more than a million lives and deliver US$ 300 billion in economic benefits.

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Citizen News Service (CNS) specializes in in-depth and rights-based, health and science journalism. For more information, please contact: www.citizen-news.org or @cns_health or www.facebook.com/cns.page

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