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Malaria


Scaling up Malaria Prevention and Treatment Programs
A health worker in Benin conducts training on using bed nets to prevent malaria. Photo by Dr. Steve Harvey, Johns Hopkins University.

Reducing malaria transmission and malaria-related deaths requires comprehensive, integrated programming. URC engages in a wide range of malaria prevention and control activities. In communities, we work with government and civil society to promote, distribute, and hang up long-lasting, insecticide-treated bed nets and carry out multi-faceted social mobilization to promote sustained use of malaria interventions. At the facility level, we ensure that providers have the skills, medicines, and equipment for intermittent preventive treatment during pregnancy, improved diagnosis through the use of rapid diagnostic tests and quality microscopy, and strengthened case management using artemisinin combination therapy. Supportive supervision of health care providers at the health facility and community levels reinforces these skills. At the national level, we improve the quality and use of malaria data and enhance procurement and logistics to ensure a reliable supply of high-quality drugs and diagnostics.  Our activities are based on rigorous operational research to identify the best models for reducing malaria transmission in the local context and entomological research to guide policy and programming decisions to reduce insecticide resistance and improve vector control.

Volunteers transport bed nets to hang in homes in remote communities in Ghana's Eastern Region. Photo by Maurice Ocquaye, URC.

In Ghana, URC’s Promoting Malaria Prevention and Treatment (ProMPT) project and the National Malaria Control Program developed an innovative door-to-door delivery and hang-up campaign model, which led to dramatic increases in net ownership and use. Social mobilization through traditional leaders, local radio, and mobile vans reinforces volunteers’ messages on net use and care. 

In Myanmar, Cambodia, and Thailand, URC’s Control and Prevention of Malaria (CAP-Malaria) Project is scaling up prevention efforts, improving quality and effectiveness of diagnosis and treatment at both the facility and community levels, building capacity of malaria control partners, and increasing the availability of strategic information. To more effectively meet the needs of mobile and migrant workers, the project is implementing a lending scheme of long-lasting insecticide-treated nets: the project loans nets to temporary farm workers through the farm owners. We are also working with taxi drivers – who transport such workers from their homes to farms – to disseminate malaria information.

URC's ProMPT project developed cards like this one for health care providers to use in explaining how to prevent malaria during pregnancy.

URC supports rapid scale-up of prevention and treatment for pregnant women in Ghana and Benin, where malaria in pregnancy poses a significant threat to mothers and newborns. In Cambodia, Ghana, Myanmar, and Thailand, we are working with community health workers to strengthen early diagnosis and prompt treatment at the community level. 

In partnership with the World Health Organization and the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics, URC developed a job aid and training program to enable volunteer community health workers to use malaria rapid diagnostic tests, sparing patients trips to health facilities and long waits for diagnosis and treatment. These materials have been translated into several languages, and the job aid is now part of rapid diagnostic distribution systems worldwide.  Read about our research on malaria diagnostic tools.

A village worker in Cambodia gives anti-malarial drugs to a malaria patient in the village. Between 2007 and 2011, the proportion of confirmed malaria cases treated by such workers doubled, contributing to a decline in the number of severe malaria cases and the malaria case fatality rate. Photo by Khorn Linna, URC.

Recent evidence of the emergence of parasite resistance to artemisinin in the Greater Mekong Region has raised global concern.  The Malaria Control in Cambodia (MCC) Project conducted surveillance to pinpoint the location and extent of drug-resistant cases in western Cambodia.  In collaboration with the World Health Organization and the National Malaria Control Programme, MCC conducted community-level Day 3 surveillance of P. falciparum malaria.  In addition, MCC mapped drug resistant malaria cases observed in two health facilities. Confirmed cases were followed for 28 days to assess the treatment. Over a quarter of them were positive on Day 3 and may be resistant to artemisinin-based combination therapy. These findings helped guide implementation of directly observed therapy for malaria and program support needs.  The follow-on CAP-Malaria Project will implement studies to determine the spread of artemisinin resistant malaria in other countries in the region.

Current Projects

Translating Research into Action (TRAction) Project
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2009 to present

USAID Health Care Improvement Project (HCI) | Global
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2007 to present

Lesotho Health Sector (LHS) Project
Funded By: Millennium Challenge Corporation
Project Duration: 2009 to present

Partnership for the Community Management of Child Health (Partenariat pour la Prise en Charge Communautaire de la Santé Infantile – Prise-C)
Funded By: US Agency for International Development (USAID)
Project Duration: 2010 to present

Diagnosis and Management of Severe Febrile Illness: Tibu Homa
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2011 to present

Control and Prevention of Malaria (CAP-Malaria) Project
Funded By: US Agency for International Development Regional Development Mission for Asia (USAID RDMA)
Project Duration: 2011 to present

Cooperative Biological Engagement Program (CBEP)
Funded By: Defense Threat Reduction Agency, US Department of Defense
Project Duration: 2013 to present

Laboratory Development and Set-Up
Funded By: Defense Threat Reduction Agency, US Department of Defense
Project Duration: 2014 to present

USAID Ghana Systems for Health Project
Funded By: US Agency for International Development (USAID)
Project Duration: 2014 to present

Past Projects

Malaria Control in Cambodia (MCC) Project
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2007-2011

Data Quality Audit (DQA) Framework
Funded By: The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria
Project Duration: 2008-2010

Benin Integrated Family Health Project (Projet Intégré de Santé Familiale, PISAF)
Funded By: US Agency for International Development and the President’s Malaria Initiative through USAID for malaria activities
Project Duration: 2006–2012

Promoting Malaria Prevention and Treatment (ProMPT)
Funded By: US Agency for International Development through the President’s Malaria Initiative
Project Duration: 2009-2013

Global Fund Consulting Services
Funded By: The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria
Project Duration: 2007 to 2012

Technical Assistance and Support Contract 3: Global Health (TASC3 Global Health)
Funded By: United States Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2007-2013

USAID Health Care Improvement Project (HCI) | Ethiopia
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2007–2012

Integrated Infectious Disease Capacity Building Evaluation (IDCAP)
Funded By: Accordia Global Health Foundation
Project Duration: 2008-2012

Nongovernmental Organization Service Delivery Program in Bangladesh
Funded By: US Agency for International Development/Bangladesh
Project Duration: 2002-2006

Central America Health Consultancies
Funded By: The World Bank
Project Duration: 1990-1995

El Salvador Strengthening Health Project Technical Assistance and Support Contract 2 (TASC2)
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2006–2009

Diagnostic Test Cost Analysis for the Developing World
Funded By: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Project Duration: 2007–2009

Health Planning and Health Delivery Systems
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 1983-1990

Primary Health Care Management Advancement Program
Funded By: The Aga Khan Foundation
Project Duration: 1991-1993

Partnerships for Health Reform Project and Partners for Health Reformplus
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 1995–2005

Primary Health Care Operations Research Project (PRICOR) I and II
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 1981–1991

Water and Sanitation for Health
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 1988–1994

Quality Assurance Project (QAP) I, II, and III
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 1990-2008

Integrated Technical Assistance Project
Funded By: US Agency for International Development/South Africa
Project Duration: 2004-2008

USAID Health Care Improvement Project (HCI) | Senegal
Funded By: US Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2010-2012

Technical Assistance and Support Contract 2 (TASC2): Global Health
Funded By: United States Agency for International Development
Project Duration: 2004–2009

Technical Support to Develop a Quality-of-Care Framework for a Hospital Health Care Improvement Project in Liberia
Funded By: The World Bank Group
Project Duration: 2013



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