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World Malaria Day: 10 Interesting Facts About Malaria to Improve Your Awareness

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Bajaj Finserv Health
April 22nd, 2022
6 mins read

Key Takeaways

  • World Malaria Day is celebrated on April 25 every year around the globe
  • World Malaria Day theme for 2021 was zero malaria by the end of the year
  • The World Malaria Day 2022 aims to harness innovation to reduce malaria

Malaria is one of the deadliest and most common viruses transmitted through mosquitoes. This disease is caused by a parasite which spreads to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. Symptoms of malaria include chills and high fever. The disease prevails in subtropical and tropical countries. World Malaria Day is celebrated on April 25 each year to raise awareness regarding this disease and stop it from spreading. Read on to know more about the history, theme and interesting facts regarding malaria.

World Malaria Day

 World Malaria Day: History

The observation of the World Malaria Day was instituted in the 60th session of the World Health Assembly in 2007 [1]. The goal of this day is to raise awareness and inform people about the disease with prevention and treatment measures. Previously this day was celebrated as African Malaria Day, but was later declared a global health emergency by WHO. On this day, communities from across the world come together and celebrate their journey towards the common goal of eradicating this illness.

Additional Read: National Influenza Vaccination Week

World Malaria Day theme 

The goal of eliminating malaria by the year 2021 was the theme and focus of World Malaria Day 2021 [2]. The theme of World Malaria Day 2022 is “Harness innovation to reduce the malaria disease burden and save lives.” 

Malaria symptoms

World Malaria Day celebration

The day is marked with activities organized by governments or private organizations around the world. Anti-malaria nets are on display which can be used in households and are distributed in public. Malaria medications are also distributed to those residing in unsanitary areas where chances of getting infected is high.

Interesting facts about malaria 

  • The word, malaria actually means “bad air”. During the 18th century there was a misconception that malaria was caught by breathing bad air from marshy areas. In 1880, research proved this was not the case but the name stayed. 
  • Five different parasites can cause malaria in your body but the deadliest one is named “plasmodium falciparum”. These parasites enter the blood stream through the bite of the infected mosquito. 
  • Malaria is commonly found in Southeast Asia and Africa. This is because mosquitos thrive in sub-tropical and tropical climates so countries near the equator are at more risk.  
  • Malaria can spread from human to human. You will not catch malaria like you catch cold, but it can pass from human to human by blood transfusion, sharing needles or through pregnancy. 

Interesting facts about malaria 

  • If you are infected with malaria, you can have none to very severe symptoms. It may take 9 to 40 days for the symptoms to appear. Early symptoms include headache, fatigue and vomiting. If these symptoms are left untreated, they can worsen leading to loss of consciousness and impairment of spinal cord, also affecting your brain functions. 
  • Malaria infects an average of 200 million people every year [3]. 
  • Malaria can be cured with prescription drugs; treatment depends on the type of strain you have been infected with. 
  • Prevention is better than cure when it comes to malaria. There are two major ways in you can prevent this disease. The first one is by using insecticide to kill mosquitos or prevent them from breeding. The second way is by using ointments and safety nets when you sleep to prevent mosquitoes from biting you. 
  • Mortality rate due to malaria is falling as there are faster treatment and more prevention options available. 
  • Among all the communicable diseases, malaria is the third largest killer of children between the ages of one month and five years [4]. 
  • Countries that successfully recorded 3 consecutive years with zero malaria can apply for the malaria-free certificate. In last 20 years, WHO has certified 11 countries as malaria-free.

Additional Read: National Deworming Day

As India represents about 3% of the malaria infections across the world [5], it is important to be careful and take preventive measures. Make sure to consult a doctor immediately if you suspect any symptoms. You can even book an online doctor consultation on Bajaj Finserv Health and get expert advices. Thus, you can lower the impact that malaria has on your body and ensure a quicker recovery.

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