In 2019 an estimated 405,000 lives were lost to malaria globally. About 67% of these were children under the age of five.
In 2012, Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention (SMC), a cost-effective intervention recommended by the World Health Organization, was introduced to protect children aged 3 – 59 months living in the Sahel regions of West and Central Africa, where malaria transmission is highest during and shortly after the rainy season.
Since its launch, SMC is being implemented in 13 countries in the Sahel region and has significantly reduced the burden of malaria among children living in the region and remains a proven strategy for protecting them. In 2020, over 30 million children were reached with SMC.
Despite this progress, many eligible children are still not reached. What is more, even when they are reached, some are not able to complete all cycles required to effectively protect them due to several factors, among which are limited resources.
To ensure that SMC remains effective and face head-on potential resistance hurdles, new drug regimens for SMC will also be needed in the coming years.
Increased and sustainable financing for health, and malaria control, of which SMC is a part, is critical to protect children in the Sahel. This becomes even more pressing in the face of the risk of shifting global health priorities towards COVID-19 and other health security challenges, which jeopardizes the integrated approach to health and puts the health sector, which encompasses malaria elimination interventions, including SMC at risk.
Through the voices of the country representatives, join us to learn more and advocate for sustainable funding for SMC.
Date: Tuesday, May 18th, 2021
Time: 3-4pm CEST / 9-10am EST / 1-2pm GMT / 2-3pm WAT / 3-4pm CAT
Event format: Virtual panel discussion