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Malaria-free in all but Palawan provinces: DOH

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As of Tuesday, all provinces in the nation—aside from Palawan—were malaria-free, according to the Department of Health (DOH).

By 2030, the department hopes to eradicate malaria.

Oriental Mindoro, the Rizal area, Aurora, and Cotabato are the four new malaria-free provinces that we have announced as of 2022, according to DOH officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire, who also spoke at a press conference.

According to Vergeire, for a province to be deemed malaria-free, there must have been no local transmission of the disease during the previous five years.

Malaria is a potentially fatal but treatable and preventable disease brought on by parasites that are spread to humans through the bites of female Anopheles mosquitoes carrying the infection.

Earlier, the DOH reported that from 48,569 cases in 2003 to only 6,120 cases in 2020, the incidence of malaria has decreased by 87 percent nationally.

To help the province eradicate malaria, the DOH is working with the World Health Organization (WHO), the Pilipinas Shell Foundation, and the local government of Palawan.

The WHO estimates that there were 247 million cases of malaria worldwide in 2021, resulting in 619, 000 deaths.

The DOH advised the public to be aware of endemic areas, avoid mosquito bites by donning long sleeves, using insect repellents, and sleeping under mosquito nets, receive prophylactic treatment before visiting endemic regions, and seek emergency medical attention if malaria symptoms are noticed.

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