Malaria, other vectorborne and parasitic diseases

Technical consultation on improving access to malaria control services for migrants and mobile populations in the context of the ERAR in the GMS

22 to 23 May 2014 - Ha Noi, Viet Nam

Summary

The Technical Consultation on Improving Access to Malaria Control Services for Migrants and Mobile Populations in the Context of the Emergency Response to Artemisinin Resistance in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) was held in Ha Noi, Viet Nam, from 22 to 23 May 2014. This is the second planned consultation with national malaria control programmes of GMS countries and key stakeholders to address migrant and mobile population issues, especially in the context of malaria elimination and artemisinin resistance. The objective was to have a prioritized action plan for migrant and mobile populations in the GMS that pushes development partners and donors to support countries in immediate areas of implementation.

The containment of artemisinin resistance in the GMS has reached a critical juncture. A recent breakthrough has shown the K13-propeller mutations as the most important molecular marker for large-scale surveillance efforts to contain artemisinin resistance in the GMS and to prevent its global spread. With the launch of the Association for Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Economic Community fast approaching and the consequent predicted explosion of mass migration for economic purposes, the time to act has never been more urgent.

In addition, cross-border collaboration needs to be improved in terms of timely information-sharing. The methodologies and tools are available, but commitment and funding are needed to move forward. The inclusion of private sector representatives in future strategy and implementation-level meetings will be an important step in facilitating the application of knowledge from public health to the business sector.

As donors look to providing additional support to GMS national malaria control programmes, they are encouraged to adopt a flexible approach to facilitate the development of innovative strategies required to combat this challenging disease.

The general objectives of this consultation are:

  • to harmonize migrant and cross-border activities proposed with country Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) Regional Artemisinin Initiative (RAI) and other donor and country initiatives focused on artemisinin resistance;
  • to standardize key data variables to be collected and platforms for data-sharing across countries; and
  • to identify constraints in cross-border collaboration, particularly for malaria control that may need to be addressed through policy dialogue with national authorities.
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