The President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) was launched in 2005 to reduce the burden of malaria and help relieve poverty on the African continent. The goal of PMI is to reduce malaria-related deaths by 70 percent in 15 focus countries by expanding coverage of four highly effective malaria prevention and treatment measures to the most vulnerable populations: pregnant women and children under-five years of age. The PMI is a key component of the U.S. Global Health Initiative.
Zambia is a PMI focus country and activities are led by USAID/Zambia and implemented together with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Zambia has shown great progress in malaria control over the past decade and malaria control remains one of the Zambian government’s highest priorities.
PMI supports four proven and cost-effective prevention and treatment interventions: insecticide-treated mosquito nets, indoor residual spraying with insecticides, intermittent preventive treatment for pregnant women, and prompt use of artemisinin-based combination therapies for those who have been diagnosed with malaria. These interventions are part of PMI’s overall operational plan, developed in close consultation with the Zambian National Malaria Control Center, and with the participation of all national and international partners involved with malaria prevention and control in Zambia.
In addition to providing malaria fighting materials such as insecticides, spray pumps and personal protective equipment, PMI support also includes the training of spray operators, monitoring of operations and environmental management to ensure compliance with human health and environmental safeguards. As part of PMI, USAID/Zambia and CDC monitor the incidence of malaria in Zambia and test for insecticide resistance in local mosquitoes. Based on results, more effective insecticides are used and malaria interventions are scaled up.
PMI activities are implemented in partnership with the Zambian government and other donors. Because of this partnership, Zambia is demonstrating steady progress in malaria control. For example, between 2006 and 2010, malaria parasite prevalence dropped from 22 to 16 percent. A nationwide scale up of insecticide-treated mosquito net use increased the proportion of households with at least one insecticide-treated mosquito net from 38 percent in 2006 to 64 percent in 2010. Malaria control has contributed to a 29 percent reduction in all-cause under-five mortality since 2002. Since 2007, the President’s Malaria Initiative contributed $88.5 million to combat malaria in Zambia.