When I was looking up something for last week’s rant, I discovered this map, which shows the progress that has been made in fighting Malaria. Sometimes, I think it’s easy to forget that while a lot remains to be done, there also has been a lot of success. The top map (a) is the extent of malaria in 1900, reconstructed from historic records; the bottom map (b) is the extent of malaria in 2007.
Of course, because this is from a scientific paper, there has to be jargon. To translate: the different colors relate to the level of infection in the general population (PR, or Parasite rate). “Endemic” means that the infection is maintained in a community at a more or less steady state.
- Epidemic/Unstable means that infections break out periodically in these regions
- Hypoendemic: less than 10% of the population is infected with malaria
- Mesoendemic: between 10% and <50% is infected with malaria
- Hyperendemic: Between 50% and75% is infected with malaria
- Holoendemic: over 75% of the population is infected with malaria
In all but 2% of areas around the globe, malaria infections have declined since the rates before 1968. This graph helps visually show where the difficult to control hot spots are, and also the range of different countries and environments in which malaria can occur.
Full Citation of the paper that is the source of this graphic:
Gething, P., Smith, D., Patil, A., Tatem, A., Snow, R., & Hay, S. (2010). Climate change and the global malaria recession. Nature, 465 (7296), 342-345 DOI: 10.1038/nature09098