Malaria control interventions protect against malaria parasitemia, severe anemia and all-cause mortality in children less than five years of age in Malawi, 2000–2010


ja-17-240

Author(s): Hershey C, Florey LS, Ali D, Bennett A, Luhanga M, Mathanga DP, Salgado R, Nielsen CF, Troell P, Jenda G, Yé Y, Bhattarai A

Year: 2017

Malaria control interventions protect against malaria parasitemia, severe anemia and all-cause mortality in children less than five years of age in Malawi, 2000–2010 Abstract:

Malaria control intervention coverage increased nationwide in Malawi during 2000–2010. Trends in intervention coverage were assessed against trends in malaria parasite prevalence, severe anemia (hemoglobin < 8 g/dL), and all-cause mortality in children under 5 years of age (ACCM) using nationally representative household surveys. Associations between insecticide-treated net (ITN) ownership, malaria morbidity, and ACCM were also assessed.

Household ITN ownership increased from 27.4% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 25.9–29.0) in 2004 to 56.8% (95% CI = 55.6–58.1) in 2010. Similarly intermittent preventive treatment during pregnancy coverage increased from 28.2% (95% CI = 26.7–29.8) in 2000 to 55.0% (95% CI = 53.4–56.6) in 2010. Malaria parasite prevalence decreased significantly from 60.5% (95% CI = 53.0–68.0) in 2001 to 20.4% (95% CI = 15.7–25.1) in 2009 in children aged 6–35 months. Severe anemia prevalence decreased from 20.4% (95% CI: 17.3–24.0) in 2004 to 13.1% (95% CI = 11.0–15.4) in 2010 in children aged 6–23 months. ACCM decreased 41%, from 188.6 deaths per 1,000 live births (95% CI = 179.1–198.0) during 1996–2000, to 112.1 deaths per 1,000 live births (95% CI = 105.8–118.5) during 2006–2010. When controlling for other covariates in random effects logistic regression models, household ITN ownership was protective against malaria parasitemia in children (odds ratio [OR] = 0.81, 95% CI = 0.72–0.92) and severe anemia (OR = 0.82, 95% CI = 0.72–0.94). After considering the magnitude of changes in malaria intervention coverage and nonmalaria factors, and given the contribution of malaria to all-cause mortality in malaria-endemic countries, the substantial increase in malaria control interventions likely improved child survival in Malawi during 2000–2010.

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