Kenya has joined the pan-African movement to strengthen local, national, and regional efforts towards a malaria-free Africa. As part of the campaign, individuals, families, communities, as well as political and business leaders will be urged to make a personal commitment to step up the fight against the disease.
The East African nation, which accounts for 3% of global malaria cases, has made significant progress against the disease in recent years. Increased access to malaria prevention tools such as insecticide-treated nets and indoor residual spraying have played a key role in Kenya’s malaria control efforts.
In the coming months, the country is planning to distribute over 15 million mosquito nets, bringing the coverage of its citizens to 25 million. Furthermore, 1.8 million Kenyans were protected from malaria through insecticide residual spraying in 2018. The nation is also participating in the world’s first pilot malaria vaccine programme with 65,000 Kenyan children immunized against malaria despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Significant gains have been made in the battle against malaria and progress needs to be accelerated. As we enter the decade to end malaria, I am committed to ensuring that we accelerate progress and end this ancient scourge. I call on the African community and especially the youth to be leaders in health and in the fight against malaria.” Said, President Kenyatta.
To kick-off the country’s Zero Malaria Starts with Me campaign, the Ministry of Health will scale up the dissemination of public health messages and promote youth engagement in the fight against malaria by developing a network of community malaria youth champions.
The Republic of Kenya has also started the process of establishing an End Malaria Council and Fund, an innovative resource mobilization mechanism to attract contributions from the private sector. Earlier this year, HE President Kenyatta called on African leaders to join him in establishing at least 15 End Malaria Councils and Funds and committed to engaging Africa’s regional economic blocs to address key challenges and provide solutions in the fight against malaria.
In line with HE President Kenyatta’s ALMA priorities around digitization and real-time access to malaria-related data at the country level, Kenya is also launching their malaria scorecard today. This scorecard allows every citizen of Kenya to understand the malaria situation where they live, empowering them to take action in the context of the Zero Malaria Starts with Me campaign.