Statement from Senators Wicker and Coons on World Malaria Day

April 25, 2014

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.), co-chairs of the Senate Caucus on Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases, released the following statement Friday recognizing World Malaria Day:

“In the 21st century, no child should die of a preventable, treatable illness. Malaria was eradicated from the U.S. more than six decades ago, but it is still a leading cause of death in many developing countries around the world. In Sub-Saharan Africa, malaria kills 1,300 children every day, or one child almost every minute. At a time of enormous economic potential, the disease drains $12 billion a year from African economies.

“We have the innovative tools and technology to end this epidemic once and for all. Global efforts to fight malaria have dramatically reduced mortality rates and saved an estimated 3.3 million lives over the last decade. Doctors and researchers are on the verge of groundbreaking medical advances that will make diagnosis, treatment, and immunization more cost-effective and accessible than ever before. The end is in sight, but we need sustained international investment to get there.

“World Malaria Day is a call to action, and an opportunity to renew our commitment to a malaria-free future. We can win the fight against this deadly disease if we continue working together to support this critical effort. In honor of World Malaria Day, we are pleased to introduce a Senate Resolution affirming our commitment to ending malaria deaths by next year.”

World Malaria Day was instituted by the World Health Assembly at its 60th session in May 2007 as a day for recognizing the global effort to provide effective control of malaria. Senators Coons and Wicker have sponsored resolutions supporting the goals of World Malaria Day, including the target of ending malaria deaths by 2015, for the past three years.