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Odisha role model in India for fight against malaria: WHO

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Bhubaneswar: Odisha is now a role model in India for fighting against mosquito-borne disease malaria, said the World Health Organisation (WHO).

In its recent report, the WHO lauded Odisha government’s efforts in reducing the malaria death cases and suggested other States to adopt ‘Odisha Model’ to fight against it.

“Odisha government has dramatically scaled up efforts to prevent, diagnose and treat malaria through its DAMaN initiative and achieved major results in a short time span,” said the World Malaria Report 2018 acknowledging State’s efforts.

Odisha, which was once a malaria-prone State, has recorded a significant decline of over 80 percent in malaria death cases in recent years. While 3,23,800 malaria positive cases were reported in the year 2017, the cases now dropped to 55,365 in 2018. The deaths due to malaria also declined to only 3 by October this year.

This has been possible due to the State government’s initiative for which Odisha has turned a role model in the country to achieve the success against malaria, said WHO’s Global Malaria Programme Director Dr. Pedro Alonso during a programme here on Tuesday.

He praised the State government for improving skills of healthcare workers, expanding access to diagnostics and treatment and strengthening data collection to control the deadly disease.