The Ministry of Health has urged the elimination of falciparum malaria by the end of this year as part of a larger plan to eliminate malaria entirely according to the Malaria Elimination Action Framework 2025.

Speaking at a meeting organised by the National Centre for Parasitology, Entomology and Malaria Control (CNM), health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said although malaria has dropped dramatically, Cambodia is not content with this achievement.

The meeting was attended by technical officers and leaders at CNM, provincial health department directors and officials from the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Vandine said Cambodia has to work harder for the rest of this year to make sure it can eliminate malaria per the Malaria Elimination Action Framework 2016-2025.

“We must check and discuss new effective strategies. We have to check all corners of our technical work to avoid problems and misunderstandings that may happen among the public,” she said.

CNM director Huy Rekol said the meeting discussed measures to eliminate malaria in provinces where the disease still presents a problem.

An increase of WHO funding as well as techniques to ensure the complete elimination of malaria in the country were also discussed, Rekol said.

According to a report from the health ministry in July, there were 454 malaria cases in Cambodia during the first six months of this year, a 70 per cent drop from the same period last year. There were no deaths reported in 2020.

WHO representative to Cambodia Li Ailan showed support regarding of measures of fighting against malaria. She encouraged further efforts to eliminate it in the country.

She said more funds were needed to eliminate the disease and encouraged further measures to eliminate falciparum malaria by the end of the year.

According to the health ministry, provinces most affected by malaria are Kampong Speu, Mondulkiri, Ratanakkiri and Stung Treng.

Vandine encouraged taking preventative anti-malarial drugs and using mosquito nets and mosquito repellent before entering high-risk areas like mountains or forests.