Tulane joins CDC effort to eliminate malaria in Hispaniola

Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is part of a newly announced U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ledconsortium that aims to eliminate indigenous cases of malaria on the island of Hispaniola by 2020.

Haitian health worker Jonel Mompremier pricks the finger of a young child to test his blood for malaria parasites in Ouanaminthe, Haiti, October 6th, 2009. The efforts of The Bi-National Malaria and Lympathic Filariasis Project have increased malaria surveillance and treatment in both Dominican Republic and Haiti. "The most important thing we can do is eliminate malaria," Mompremier says. "I'm happy to contribute to the solution."

Haitian health worker Jonel Mompremier pricks the finger of a young child to test his blood for malaria parasites in Ouanaminthe, Haiti.

The CDC Foundation has received a $29.9 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to launch the Haiti Malaria Elimination Consortium (HaMEC) which will target the last remaining island in the Caribbean where malaria is endemic. Tulane will receive a $2.9 million grant from the CDC Foundation to lead operations research to provide evidence for implementing effective elimination strategies. Tulane will also help measure transmission interruption on the island and assist in designing and implementing malaria surveillance strategies.

“We are very excited to be working with such a strong group of partners,” said Thom Eisele, director of the Center for Applied Malaria Research and Evaluation at Tulane University and associate professor of global health systems and development. “The elimination of malaria in Haiti and across the island is a very real and tangible outcome.”

Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by a parasite. Left untreated, it can cause severe complications and death. In 2013, there were more than 20,000 confirmed malaria cases in Haiti, where the majority of Hispaniola’s cases occur.

The consortium will work closely with the countries of Hispaniola in developing, adopting and implementing its malaria elimination plan; securing additional financial resources needed to achieve elimination; improving and refining malaria surveillance systems and reducing malaria transmission through community-based interventions.

In addition to Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, CDC and the CDC Foundation the consortium includes the Haiti Ministry of Public Health and Population, the Dominican Republic Ministry of Public Health, the Pan American Health Organization, The Carter Center, the Clinton Health Access Initiative and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. The Tulane team includes Associate Professor Joe Keating and assistant professors Josh Yukich and Katherine Andrinopoulos.

Keith Brannon

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About Tulane University SPHTM

Tulane's School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is the oldest school of public health in the country and the only American school of tropical medicine. Our mission is to advance public health knowledge, promote health and well-being, and prevent disease, disability, and premature mortality. This is accomplished through academic excellence in education of public health professionals, rigorous scientific research of public health problems, creative partnerships to advance the practice of public health, and innovative service to the local, national, and international public health community.
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