• The Union Health Minister has launched the National Framework for MalariaElimination (NFME) 2016-2030, which outlines India’s strategy for elimination of the disease by 2030 and will contribute to improved health and quality of life and alleviation of poverty.
• The NFME document clearly defines goals, objectives, strategies, targets and timelines and will serve as a roadmap for advocating and planning malaria elimination in the country in a phased manner.
The objectives of the NFME:
” Eliminate malaria from all low (Category 1) and moderate (Category 2) endemic states/UTs (26) by 2022;
• Reduce incidence of malaria to less than 1 case per 1000 population in all States/UTs and the districts and malaria elimination in 31 states/UTs by 2024;
• Interrupt indigenous transmission of malaria in all States/ UTs (Category 3) by 2027;
• Prevent re-establishment of local transmission of malaria in areas where it has been eliminated and to maintain malaria-free status of the country by 2030. The milestones and targets are set for 2016, 2020, 2022, 2024, 2027 and 2030 by when the entire country has sustained zero indigenous cases and deaths due to malaria for 3 years and initiated the processes for certification of malaria elimination status to the country.
• The NFME 2016-2030 also defines key strategic approaches such as programme phasing considering the varying malaria endemicity in the country; classification of States/UTs based on API as primary criterion (Category 0: Prevention of re- introduction phase; Category 1: Elimination phase; Category 2: Pre-elimination phase; Category 3: Intensified control phase); district as the unit of planning and implementation; focus on high endemic areas; and special strategy for P. vivax elimination.
• In the short-term, i.e. by end of 2016, all states/UTs are expected to include malaria elimination in their broader health policies and planning framework; by end of 2017, all states are expected to bring down API to less than 1 per thousand population; and by end of 2020, 15 states/UTs under category 1 (elimination phase) are expected to interrupt transmission of malaria and achieve zero indigenous cases and deaths due to malaria.
• This framework demonstrates renewed commitment and strategic thinking on India’s part, and is a significant effort for the malaria elimination efforts and goals of the region and globally also.
• The main goals of the National Framework for Malaria Elimination in India are to:
• Eliminate malaria (zero indigenous cases) throughout the entire country by 2030; and
• Maintain malaria free status in areas where malaria transmission has been interrupted and prevent re-introduction of malaria