Malaria No More and Partners celebrate delivery of 400,000 tests and treatments
A tripartite initiative to fight malaria in children gained further momentum this month with arrival in Zambia of a second consignment of malaria tests and treatments.
The delivery of an additional 200,000 Coartem® Dispersible child treatments and some 200,000 SD Bioline rapid diagnostic tests coincided with the launch of the Power of One campaign, with partners including the Zambian Ministry of Health, U.S.-based nonprofit Malaria No More, and two leading healthcare companies Novartis, the world’s leading provider of malaria treatments, and Alere, the world’s leading manufacturer of rapid diagnostic tests for malaria.
Minister of Health Hon. Dr Joseph Kasonde was guest of honor at a press briefing in Lusaka on Thursday (October 17) at which details of the latest move in the country’s bid to eradicate malaria were presented to representatives from participating organizations, along with dignitaries and guests from the industry and the healthcare sector.
An additional 200,000 Coartem® Dispersible child treatments and some 200,000 SD Bioline rapid diagnostic tests were due to reach Zambia this month, making a total of 400,000 malaria tests and 400,000 malaria treatments the Power of One campaign has delivered to date.
Power of One is a campaign to engage the global public and the world’s most innovative companies to help close the malaria treatment gap in Africa using the latest mobile, social, and e-commerce technologies. Every dollar donated will fund a full course of life-saving treatment for a child diagnosed with malaria. The first 200,000 tests and 200,000 treatment courses started to fill Zambia’s testing and treatment gaps this past July, with the goal to ensure every child with malaria is treated between now and the end of 2015.
“It’s unacceptable that a child dies every minute for lack of a test and treatment that costs so little,” said Martin Edlund, Chief Executive Officer of Malaria No More. “We’re urging the world to join the Power of One campaign and to donate and engage their friends in this fight.”
The Zambian government has demonstrated strong leadership, commitment and innovation in the malaria fight, by:
- Contributing US$24 million (ZMW127 million) of domestic financing towards malaria control in 2013
- Announcing plans to eliminate malaria initially in five areas in the southern and Lusaka provinces nationwide;
- Introducing an innovative SMS reporting system with partners Malaria Control and Evaluation Partnership in Africa (MACEPA), a program at PATH, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, to provide weekly updates on tests and treatments from 500 health workers across the country.
Zambia’s Health Minister, Dr Joseph Kasonde was delighted that partners are positively responding to assist the health sector in addressing/reducing the gap for malaria testing tools and treatment, in particular the pediatric formulation for children under five years old who are the most affected.
“The coming on board of Malaria No More and other private sector companies is a clear demonstration of the flourishing public-private sector partnership in the country, which in my view is our hope for Zambia and other endemic countries to reduce malaria and move towards meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs),” said Dr Kasonde.
He said Zambia’s success story was anchored on strong partnership at global, national and community levels and had put in deliberate measures to continue to attract new partners as part of its malaria fight and elimination agenda.
Novartis, the world’s leading provider of malaria treatments, has committed to donate up to three million full courses of its pediatric antimalarial drug as part of the Power of One campaign, and will support the campaign financially over the next three years. “I am proud of the significant and longstanding commitment Novartis has to the fight against malaria. For all our progress though, there’s still more work to do” said Joseph Jimenez, CEO of Novartis. “We need more help to close the treatment gap and Power of One offers everyone a chance to engage and make a difference for children suffering from malaria.”
Alere, the world’s leading manufacturer of rapid diagnostic tests for malaria and several chronic and infectious diseases, will donate two million rapid diagnostic tests over the next two years to accurately diagnose the disease in Sub-Saharan Africa. “Accurate diagnosis of malaria significantly improves the odds in treating the disease and ending premature deaths of children,” said Ron Zwanziger, Chairman and CEO of Alere. “Alere is proud to partner with Malaria No More and to support the Power of One campaign in its goal of preventing deaths from this devastating disease.”
Zambia partners contributing to the Power of One campaign include John Snow, Inc. (JSI), PATH/MACEPA, Peace Corps, and the United States President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI).
The Power of One campaign officially launched in the United States on September 23, 2013. To learn more and donate, go to www.Po1.org.
About Power of One
Power of One is offering the global public and corporations the opportunity to end malaria deaths one dollar and one child at a time. Every dollar donated will provide a malaria test and treatment for a child in Africa. Malaria No More is grateful for the support and contributions of Power of One partners: Novartis, Alere, the Zambian Government, 21st Century Fox, AGFUND, AHAlife.com, Causes.com, Havas Worldwide, John Snow, Inc., Newman’s Own Foundation, PATH/MACEPA, Peace Corps, Time Warner, Twitter, the United States President’s Malaria Initiative, Venmo, West, and more. Additional information is available at www.Po1.org.