Children and malaria: treating and protecting the most vulnerable

25 Feb 2019

MMV continues to work tirelessly to ensure that children at greatest risk of contracting malaria have access to essential medicines across the globe.

Of all the causes of childhood mortality, malaria is among the top killers, and in 2017, 61% of the estimated 435,000 lives lost to malaria were those of children under 5.The disease continues to take the life of a young child every 2 minutes.

Children are particularly vulnerable to malaria as, unlike adults that have grown up in endemic regions, they have yet to develop the necessary immunity to defend themselves against the disease. The malaria parasite, once it has infected a child, multiplies exponentially, destroying red blood cells, leading to fever, vomiting, diarrhoea and anaemia. If not treated within 24 hours, malaria can progress to severe illness, including convulsions and coma, can result in death.

 1. World Health Organization. World Malaria Report 2018.