Over 2 billion people are at risk of Malaria in the Asia Pacific RegionListen /
Malaria, a disease often associated with Africa, is also a major threat to public health in the Asia Pacific region where over 2.2 billion people are at risk, according to the UN funded Roll Back Malaria (RBM) Partnership.
India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Myanmar and Papua New Guinea bear the largest burden of the disease in the region.
In 2010 the Asia Pacific region recorded close to 30 million new cases of malaria with over 42,000 deaths.
The emergence of Artemisinin resistant malaria parasites in the region is posing the greatest challenge to the control and elimination of malaria in the Asia Pacific region.
Dr Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré is the Executive Director of the Roll Back Malaria Partnership.
"To be able to protect this single class of drug for which we are seeing the resistance, we need to develop new drugs. We need to continue building evidence for malaria control. We need to look for a vaccine that will support the fight. Multi-sectoral approach is critical to malaria control. Malaria is not only a health issue; it's an issue for development. Investing in malaria control will help in reducing absenteeism at work, absenteeism at school. It will help bring in additional investment to areas that are being left because of the malaria burden.