25 April 2019

Nigeria: U.S. Salutes Health Champions in Nigeria Leading Efforts to End Malaria

opinion

On World Malaria Day, the United States is proud to recognize our partnership with Nigeria and support your fight to beat this deadly disease. We salute all Nigeria's health champions--from health workers to mothers, pharmacists to drivers, journalists to researchers, teachers to warehouse managers--and all those working to end malaria.

As a global community, we have achieved remarkable success. Together, we've cut malaria mortality by half in sub-Saharan Africa, and saved over 7 million lives since 2000. In Nigeria, the United States has contributed $495 million for malaria control since the U.S. President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) began in 2011, distributing more than 26 million long lasting insecticidal bed nets, 23 million malaria rapid diagnostic test kits, 52 million treatment courses, and 14 million doses of medication to prevent malaria in pregnancy. As we commemorate World Malaria Day on April 25, we celebrate this success. As the world's leading donor in global health, the United States is committed to working with our partners to intensify efforts to end malaria for good.

We know fighting malaria is a smart investment to protect health, create opportunity, and foster growth and security worldwide. And we know fighting malaria together makes us more effective and achieves greater impact than any of us could alone. Countries are best positioned to beat malaria with strong partnerships behind them. American partnership--including technical and financial commitments through the U.S. President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) as well as the U.S. contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria--remains a cornerstone for continued global progress.

Since 2011, PMI, led by the U.S. Agency for International Development and implemented together with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has partnered with Nigeria to support their fight against malaria. PMI's transformative programs in Nigeria leverage and strengthen national leadership, resources, and systems to deliver lifesaving interventions more effectively and promote enduring malaria control gains. PMI walks alongside partner countries on their journey to end malaria as an evolving, but enduring partner--promoting and building their self-reliance. PMI empowers every person, every community, and every country to fight malaria as an equal, valued, and essential partner.

This year's World Malaria Day theme - Zero Malaria Starts with Me - recognizes this role we all play in ending malaria. So today we call on everyone - national governments, donors, communities, families, faith leaders, the private sector, and many others - to fight this deadly disease alongside us. Together we can scale proven interventions to close coverage gaps. We can share research, best practices, and data to stay ahead. We can welcome new products, players, and processes to advance our fight.

This World Malaria Day, we are proud to reaffirm the commitment of the United States to continuing this global progress and ending malaria in Nigeria. And I extend our hand in partnership to all of those who will join us. Zero malaria starts with me, you, and everyone working together for a more prosperous and healthy future for all.

Symington is the United States Ambassador to Nigeria.

Nigeria

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