November 7, 2013
Drug-resistant malaria—or artemisinin resistance—is a major problem, one that has arisen in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region, but could easily emerge in Africa and elsewhere. It stands as a dire threat to the phenomenal progress that has been achieved over the last few years in controlling an ancient and devastating parasitic disease—progress so remarkable that the disease now stands on the brink of elimination.
Although many in the health and scientific communities are aware of artemisinin resistance, it is not well understood outside those communities. This report aims to fill a gap by serving as a primer for the nontechnical audience. What is drug-resistant malaria? Why should we care? What are the key factors that have driven its emergence? What are the essential components of malaria control, and what additional unique challenges will need to be overcome to successfully resolve this problem?