Malaria-related headlines have focused on Rwanda, Ethiopia and Zanzibar where it has been possible to work in a relatively focused area to bring about large malaria program impacts. Efforts in Mali have slipped under the radar according to Claudia Vondrasek, The VOICES field operations coordinator based in Bamako. Claudia shares results from a Mali national survey conducted by HealthBridge Canada in Aug 2008 that have now become available. Net progress is substantial.
81.1% of households with at least 1 ITN 78.5% children under 5 years of age slept under a net the night before 96.3% of children under 6 years of age slept under a net in households with at least 1 ITN 73.9% of pregnant women slept under a net the night before Two important trends to mention - Not only are we closing the gap in Mali to achieve 2010 LLIN targets (80% use nationally) in Mali, it looks like many countries are making great strides on their way to reaching those targets in recent years. This is mainly due to a sustained commitment by the international partnership to support National Malaria Control Programs to achieve 2010 RBM targets of 80% coverage of key interventions.
The other less heartening trend is the lag time being recorded between grant approval, signature and Phase 1 disbursement. Many suspect this is a function of evaporating resources available for GF grants.
Progress in Mali has been building for the past two years. The US President’s Malaria Initiative has played a key role in “a unique public-private partnership with the American Red Cross, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and others, the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), through USAID, provided $1 million for the purchase of 169,800 long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets (LLINs) as part of a national child survival campaign in Mali conducted in December 2007.”
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