World Maleria Day – April 25

World Maleria Day – April 25

World Malaria Day (WMD) is commemorated every year on 25 April and recognizes global efforts to control malaria. The theme of World Malaria Day 2014 and in coming years is “Invest in the future: Defeat malaria”. World Malaria Day was established in May 2007 by the 60th session of the World Health Assembly, WHO’s decision-making body. The day was established to provide “education and understanding of malaria” and spread information on “year-long intensified implementation of national malaria-control strategies, including community-based activities for malaria prevention and treatment in endemic areas.”

Prior to the establishment of WMD, Africa Malaria Day was held on April 25. Africa Malaria Day began in 2001, one year after the historic Abuja Declaration was signed by 44 malaria-endemic countries at the African Summit on Malaria.

World Malaria Day allows for corporations such as Exxon Mobile, multinational organizations such as Malaria No More and grassroots organizations such asMosquitoes Suck Tour globally to work together to bring awareness to malaria and advocate for policy changes.

World Malaria Day is a chance to shine a spotlight on the global effort to control malaria. Each year, Roll Back Malaria (RBM) partner organisations unite around a common World Malaria Day theme. Invest in the future: defeat malaria is a three-year theme partners chose for the period of 2013-2015 to call attention to the need to reach the 2015 Millennium Development Goals and defeat malaria in the future.

What is malaria?
Malaria is an infectious disease that is caused by mosquito-borne plasmodium parasite which infects the red blood cells. It’s one of the deadliest diseases in India. There’s no vaccine for malaria yet and immunity occurs naturally through repeated infection. Common symptoms are fever, chills, vomiting, nausea, body ache, headache, cough and diarrhoea. If untreated, it can lead to complications like jaundice, dehydration, anaemia, brain malaria, liver failure and kidney failure. Children, pregnant women, and the elderly – anyone with decreased immunity is at a greater risk.

How does one get malaria?
The life cycle of malaria is complicated and it involves two hosts- the human being and the mosquito. Once bitten by a female anopheles mosquito, the malarial parasite enters the blood stream. It travels all through his blood stream to reach the liver. In the liver the parasite matures and multiplies. Some of the parasites stay there whereas the other parasites move out from the liver attacking red blood cells. The parasite then multiplies in the red blood cells. In the next 48-72 hours, more parasites are released into the blood.  This is the reason why the chills of malaria are generally seen after 48 to 72 hours corresponding to the release of the malarial parasite in the blood.

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