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Would anyone please explain why the example below is not being followed.

August 28, 2015 - 15:53 -- Anton Alexander

Would anyone please explain why the example below of a successful method of malaria elimination is not being followed elsewhere?

Comments

William Jobin's picture
Submitted by William Jobin on

Dear Anton,

I share your frustration at the blind march of our global fight against malaria towards irrelevance. There might be several reasons but I think that the main problem is the seductive appeal of gleaming laboratories where research on all sorts of intricate subjects can be comfortably pursued. In your fascination with Dr. Kligler and his success in Mandated Palestine, you should realize that his work in the swamps and agricultural lands of the Holy Land was dirty, dusty and difficult, with little scientific prestige or international acclaim.

Perhaps we need an Institute for Global Malaria Strategy to give cachet to the idea of attacking malaria with a holistic and enduring approach, such as that of Kligler. That would be a positive way of dealing with our problem. For it seems to me that the people guiding WHO, RBM and the US PMI prefer gleaming labs or hospital wards in which to conduct their efforts. In crude terms, I think that they find much more prestige in wearing a white lab coat than in mucking around mosquito-infested swamps. Research on immunology, new drugs and vaccines has more international cachet in the global scientific community than does field investigations of epidemiology and entomology. It is revealing that in the advisory group set up for the new head of the WHO malaria program in Geneva, there is not one person with African field experience in malaria control. This is not a new trend in WHO, it has been this way for decades. I have also noticed that the people leading our global program pay little attention to history - thus we shall repeat it. So out Institute for Global Malaria Strategy should also teach history.

We also need to deal with the pernicious influence of Big Pharma, and the vaccine developers who brazenly promote their mythological vaccines. Dr. Pierre Lutgen has recently described the dangers in these chemically oriented approaches, with bed-nets soaked in biocides surrounding sleeping infants. And this is the sum total of WHO efforts at "Vector Control!"

Many of us have devoted at least a decade in fruitlessly trying to convince the current leaders of our Global Malaria effort about the need to develop a holistic approach. Thus I am somewhat chagrined to admit that I have now developed the cynical view that we will not get donors attention until there has been another collapse of the Global Malaria Program, similar to that in the 1960s when the WHO/USAID GMEP collapsed the first time. Unfortunately repetition of this tragedy is not far off.

In the meantime I hope to stimulate ecologists and environmental engineers to improve on the holistic approach of your beloved Dr. Kligler - and others like him - to be used after the next GMEP collapse. I regret that I cannot propose a more cheerful approach, unless you can devise a way to establish the Institute for Global Malaria Strategy which looks at the big picture.

Bill

William Jobin Director of Blue Nile Associates

Submitted by Anton Alexander (not verified) on

How depressing to read the Guidelines issued by Public Health England, and may be seen at https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/461295/2015.09.16_ACMP_guidelines_FINAL.pdf

It has hardly changed since the League of Nations Malaria Commission reported in 1924 ".... we have to acknowledge in the first place that in reality we are not yet in a position to suggest any single plan for dealing with malaria which would certainly be permanently effective in actual practice."

Submitted by Anton Alexander (not verified) on

The Guidelines issued by Public Health England in the previous comment may be a bit indistinct, and so I am repeating the website https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/461295/2015.09.16_ACMP_guidelines_FINAL.pdf

These guidelines/report on the current state of malaria elimination seem to have changed little since the League of Nations Malaria Commisssion reported in 1924!!