PUTRAJAYA (April 26): After Malaysia achieves the target of zero case local human malaria infection, the Health Ministry (MOH) will also expand its focus on malaria related to animal (zoonotic) infections, said its Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba.
He said that Malaysia has managed to achieve the target of zero cases of indigenous human malaria infection for three consecutive years from 2018 to 2020 nationwide.
“Despite the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, Malaysia continues its efforts, especially in the elimination of malaria,” he said in his opening speech at the national-level celebration of the 2021 World Malaria Day today.
For the record, the number of malaria cases in the country was successfully reduced from 250,000 cases a year in 1961 to 12,000 in 2000.
According to Dr Adham, malaria cases continued to decline, from 85 cases in 2017 to zero from 2018 to 2020.
Following the success of maintaining the zero status of local malaria infection for three consecutive years, Dr Adham said Malaysia was eligible to apply for Malaria Elimination Certification from the World Health Organisation (WHO).
“The eligibility to receive this certificate means that the preventive measures carried out by the MOH are appropriate, but should still be strengthened further,” he said. – Bernama