Odisha to be malaria free by 2030


BUBANESWAR: Odisha govt. is planning to eliminate the malaria  by 2030. The state government on Friday signed an MoU with Tata Trusts, the philanthropic arm of the Tata Group, for screening people, creating awareness and greater use of technology.Health minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak said the collaboration will help use innovation on mass screening in inaccessible areas for early diagnosis and treatment and use technology in controlling malaria in high-endemic districts of southern part of the state. It will also help achieve the target of malaria-free state in 15 years.Health secretary Arti Ahuja said Tata Trusts will reach out to 25,000 households in the most-vulnerable pockets for early detection and prompt treatment of malaria. The greater focus would be on 557 villages in five select blocks (Bissamcuttack and Muniguda of Rayagada district, Lanjigarh and Thuamulrampur of Kalahandi district and Kotgarh of Kandhamal district) in southern Odisha.

 Official sources said eight costal districts, having 30% population, have very low prevalence of malaria with less than one case per 1,000 population per year. The government targets to make these districts zero-malaria zone within next few years.
 The government target seems ambitious because Odisha tops the list of malaria positive cases in the country. In 2015, total 4.32 lakh people tested positive for malaria in the state, the number being the highest in the country. It reported 78 deaths, which is second highest after Meghalaya’s 79.