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Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Rapid malaria diagnostic tests for people in rural areas

A new evaluation of malaria rapid diagnostic tests will help health workers quickly identify which patients have the disease and need immediate treatment, putting into action recent World Health Organization recommendations to confirm diagnosis of malaria before treatment. Malaria kills 860 000 people a year worldwide, mostly children in Africa. In addition, there are cases in Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and parts of Europe.The Malaria Product Testing Evaluation Programme just completed a new assessment of the performance of 29 rapid diagnostic tests and found that 15 of them met minimum performance criteria set by WHO."These rapid tests have been a major breakthrough in malaria control," said Dr Robert Newman, Director of WHO's Global Malaria Programme. "They allow us to test people who cannot access diagnosis based on microscopy in remote, rural areas where the majority of malaria occurs."

 

Source: World Health Organization