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Analysis of Malaria Epidemiological Characteristics in the People's Republic of China, 2004–2013

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  • National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, WHO Collaborating Centre for Tropical Diseases, Key Laboratory of Parasite and Vector Biology, Ministry of Health, National Center for International Research on Tropical Diseases, Shanghai 200025, The People's Republic of China

This study aims to explore and characterize the malaria-endemic situation and trends from 2004 to 2013, to provide useful evidence for subsequently more effective strategic planning of malaria elimination in China. A total of 256,179 confirmed malaria cases were recorded in this period, and 86.8% of them were reported during 2004–2008. Between 2004 and 2008, Plasmodium vivax was the major species (72.2%) of malaria parasite. Most cases (67.3%) were found in male, and mainly in the age group of 35–39 years. A total of 236 deaths resulting from malaria were reported and nearly half (45.3%) of them were in Yunnan province. In all, 204,760 local malaria (79.9%) and 51,419 imported malaria (20.1%) were observed during 2004–2013. However, afterward the proportion of imported malaria continuously increased from 2004 (16.2%) to 2013 (97.9%). Moreover, 9,285 imported malaria cases were recorded during 2011–2013 in China, of which 5,976 cases (64.4%) came back from Africa. Overall, China has made achievements in controlling malaria, the locally transmitted malaria significantly declined in the past decades, by which the incidence has achieved historically the lowest levels. On the other hand, imported malaria has increasingly become a severe threat to malaria elimination. Therefore, to prevent the reintroduction of malaria, surveillance systems need to be well planned and managed to ensure timely case detection and prompt response at the elimination stage.

Author Notes

* Address correspondence to Ning Xiao, National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, WHO Collaborating Centre for Tropical Diseases, Key Laboratory of Parasite and Vector Biology, Ministry of Health, National Center for International Research on Tropical Diseases, 207 Ruijin Er Road, Shanghai 200025, The People's Republic of China. E-mail: ningxiao116@126.com

Financial support: This work was supported by China-UK Global Health Support Programme (GHSP; grant no. GHSP-CS-OP1 and OP3).

Authors' addresses: Jun Feng, Huihui Xiao, Zhigui Xia, Li Zhang, and Ning Xiao, National Institute of Parasitic Diseases, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Key Laboratory of Parasite and Vector Biology, Ministry of Health, WHO Collaborating Centre for Tropical Diseases, National Center for International Research on Tropical Diseases, Shanghai 200025, The People's Republic of China, E-mails: fjphilip1983@hotmail.com, xhh501@126.com, nipdxzhg@163.com, zhangli5337@gmail.com, and ningxiao116@126.com.

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