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1291Re: [ujeni] Malaria

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  • Paul DEVER
    Apr 29, 2000
      That reminds me of two ddt stories:

      Back when I was a volunteer, the Ag chief in our village had a simple
      solution to his mosquito problem. He sprayted his hous eonmce a month with
      concentrated DDT. It worked...but he could never figure out why his kids
      were always sick...

      Another guy who worked for an NGO smuggled keg beer into the country by
      labelling it DDT in big letters all over the kegs...no one ever looked at

      Although mosquitos are killing more people than AIDS now, I wonder when it
      will be the reverse...

      ----Original Message Follows----
      From: "Weber" <weber@...>
      Reply-To: ujeni@egroups.com
      To: <ujeni@egroups.com>
      CC: "Jennifer Weber" <jlweber@...>, "Alan Debrauw"
      <debrauw@...>, "Joan Granata" <jofra@...>
      Subject: [ujeni] Malaria
      Date: Sat, 29 Apr 2000 08:39:51 -0700

      Poor stung by malaria's hidden cost

      Sarah Boseley, Health correspondent
      Tuesday April 25, 2000
      The Guardian

      Malaria is taking a far greater toll of the economy of many developing
      countries than has been previously understood, leaving them
      up to 20% worse off within 15 years than similar countries without serious
      infestation, according to a report from the World Health
      Organisation (WHO).

      The report, by Jeffrey Sachs of the Centre for International Development at
      Harvard University, and colleagues at the London School
      of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, says: "The cost of malaria is
      substantially greater than economists have previously estimated."

      Previous estimates have taken account of only the immediate short-term
      costs, such as the loss of labour and the costs of
      treatment and prevention. But the longer-term costs are even more
      devastating to the country, Dr Sachs says.

      "Malaria may impede the flows of trade, foreign investment and commerce,
      thereby affecting a country's entire population.

      "Tourists shun regions with high malaria, as do multinational firms choosing
      the location of foreign investments."

      Repeated bouts of malaria damage children's mental and physical development
      and play havoc with their schooling. This
      encourages parents to have more children, increasing population growth,
      impoverishing families and preventing women from joining
      the labour force. All these are hidden costs not usually taken into account
      in estimating the economic damage malaria causes.

      The publication of the Sachs report coincides with the opening today of the
      first summit of African heads of state - in Abuja, Nigeria
      - to address the issue of malaria. The leaders are expected to commit
      themselves to a WHO programme.

      "Malaria traps the people of Africa in poverty," said the Nigerian
      president, Olusegun Obasanjo. "It stops adults earning a living and
      children from going to school. Each year families spend the equivalent of
      several months' earnings on malaria treatment and

      "It does not have to be like this. Malaria is preventable, treatable and

      David Nabarro, head of the Roll Back Malaria programme, said the work of the
      economists had shown how malaria control was not
      just a health matter but a development issue. "The language of the 80s where
      we saw health and education as a luxury was wrong,"
      he said.

      "Between 1965 and the present, the economic growth rates of African nations
      have been reduced by 40% as a result of malaria and
      its consequences. We're moving towards an awareness that disease is not just
      a suffering illness issue but a massive brake on
      economic and human development.

      "My personal view is this. Say the total economic cost of malaria in Africa
      is $2bn (�1.3bn) a year and we know that we could halve
      malaria death rate in Africa as result of investing $200m to $300m a year.
      Put very crudely, that means one extra dollar spent on
      malaria could be associated with $5-$10 economic benefit. That is one of the
      most extraordinarily good development deals around."

      The way forward, says the WHO, is through programmes that incorporate all
      the best practice in malaria treatment and control,
      such as pesticide-impregnated bednets and combinations of drugs to counter
      the resistance that now exists to medicines like

      But the notorious pesticide DDT is still the only way to keep down the
      malaria-bearing mosquitoes in houses in the worst-infested
      regions of the poorest developing countries, Dr Nabarro acknowledges.

      "If we don't use DDT the results will be measured in loss of life. The cost
      of the alternatives tend to run at about six times as much
      as the cost of DDT." Environmentalists have been campaigning for a total ban
      on DDT.

      The long-term hope for malaria control is a vaccine. The WHO is working to
      encourage academic institutions and industry to
      increase their efforts. President Clinton has offered tax credits to
      companies producing a vaccine.

      � Copyright Guardian Media Group plc.

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