What is Malaria?

Every 2 minutes a child dies from malaria - a disease spread by a single mosquito bite. Nothing But Nets works with supporters and partners around the world to raise funds and awareness about the disease and advocate for malaria prevention.

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Malaria is a disease caused by the blood parasite Plasmodium, which is transmitted by mosquitoes. Each year, an estimated 219 million people are infected with malaria, causing approximately 600,000 deaths – mostly children under the age of five.

Malaria is particularly devastating in Africa, where it is a leading killer of children. In fact, there are 10 new cases of malaria every second. Every 2 minutes, a child in Africa dies from a malaria infection and 90% of all malaria deaths occur in the region.  When combined with HIV/AIDS, malaria is even more deadly, particularly for pregnant women and children.

Malaria is a big problem – and the disease has big consequences for families, communities, and countries. Fortunately, there are small things that can help make a huge impact in the fight against malaria. It’s easy to help: Nothing But Nets works with our UN partners to prevent malaria in Sub-Saharan Africa by sending nets to save lives and raising voices to let policymakers know that the fight against malaria is important.

Learn about the many ways you can take action now!

Did you know?

  • Malaria is only transmitted by infected female mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles. Most female Anopheles mosquitoes are nocturnal feeders (that is, they only bite at night).
  • Four Nobel Prizes have been awarded for work associated with malaria to Sir Ronald Ross (1902), Charles Louis Alphonse Laveran (1907), Julius Wagner-Jauregg (1927), and Paul Hermann Müller (1948).
  • The two most effective and potent anti-malaria drugs come from plants with medicinal values recognized for centuries: artemisinin from the Qinghao plant (Artemisia annual, China, 4th century) and quinine from the cinchona tree (South America, 17th century).
  • When combined with HIV/AIDS, malaria is even more deadly, particularly for pregnant women and children.
Nyoul Tong promo“It’s easy to feel powerless to help. But malaria is not one of those issues: you and I have the power to end this preventable disease.”

Nyoul Tong
Former refugee from South Sudan

Read Nyuol’s Story »

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