The deadly international killer known as malaria was the target of a congressional hearing held today by Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04), chairman of the House congressional panel that oversees global health issues.
“For the last century, America has been a leader in the fight against malaria,” said Smith. “While the United States and several other countries have been able to eliminate malaria, this deadly disease still presents a serious challenge to other parts of our world.” Click here to watch Cong. Smith's opening remarks, or click here to read Smith’s opening statement.
The hearing, entitled “Fighting Malaria: Progress and Challenges,” focused on the latest developments, including promising new preventative measures against the disease, which annually kills three-quarters of a million people around the world, mostly children. C-SPAN provided live coverage of the testimony, which can be viewed in its video library of the hearing.
“What began for the United States as an effort to protect our troops abroad and citizens here at home has become for us a larger global health objective,” Smith said. “In the last decade we have seen a renewed commitment by the United States, international organizations, and private foundations to eliminate all malaria deaths. The effort received a notable boost in 2007 when Bill and Melinda Gates renewed the challenge of worldwide malaria eradication. While much progress has been made in combating malaria, as we have seen from past eradication efforts, malaria can resurge when treatment becomes ineffective through drug resistance.”
The event feature testimony on the global challenges posed by malaria before the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Human Rights. Witnesses (click on name to read testimony) included:
- Ambassador Mark Green, Senior Director of U.S. Global Leadership Coalition and former U.S. Congressman;
- Dr. Dennis Schmatz, Ph.D., President of the Board of Medicines for Malaria Venture North America, Inc.;
- Dr. Regina Rabinovich, M.D., Director of the Infectious Diseases Global Health Program at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation;
- Roger Bate, Legatum Fellow in Global Prosperity at the American Enterprise Institute;
- Dr. David Bowen, Ph.D. Chief Executive Officer, Malaria No More, and;
- Dr. Richard W. Steketee, M.D., Science Director of the Malaria Control Program for Appropriate Technology in Health.