Special Summit of African Union on HIV and AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (ATM), Abuja, took place in Nigeria, from 12-16 July 2013, and produced a declaration that stressed â€œAbuja Actions Toward the Elimination of HIV and AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in Africa by 2030.”
The participants declared on 16 July 2013 that, â€œWe, the Heads of State and Government of the African Union, meeting at a Special Summit of the African Union in Abuja, Nigeria, on 15 and 16 July 2013 focusing on the Theme: â€˜Ownership, Accountability and Sustainability of HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis (TB) and Malaria Response in Africa: Past, Present and the Futureâ€™ to review the progress made and the challenges faced in implementing the Abuja Declaration and Plan of Action on Roll Back Malaria (RBM) of 2000; the Abuja Declaration and Plan of Action on HIV and AIDS, Tuberculosis and Other Infectious Diseases (ORID) of 2001; and the Abuja Call for Accelerated Action Towards Universal Access to HIV and AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Services in Africa by 2010″ agreed to undertake several key actions.
Some actions were integrated such as, “Ensure that strategies are in place for diversified, balanced and sustainable financing for health, in particular AIDS, TB and Malaria, development of strategic health investment plans and strategies for innovative financing, including from the private sector” While others were disease specific like the following for malaria:
- Strengthen the use of effective insecticides for control and elimination of malaria, including the use of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), where necessary
- Intensify the use of Larval Source Management (LSM) where suitable for the control and elimination of Malaria
- Ensure that Malaria Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDT) meet WHO procurement criteria, are quality-controlled and selected to meet local Malaria epidemiology
- Accelerate scale-up of the WHO “T3: Test, Treat and Track” Initiative by ensuring universal access to diagnostic, testing for all suspected malaria cases and quality-assured anti-malaria treatment for confirmed infections, and tracking the diseases through timely and accurate surveillance
- Maintain funding for, and uninterrupted supply of, life-saving malaria commodities to prevent resurgences of malaria that can occur rapidly with devastating loss of life
The summit was not an end in itself, but a benchmark. The Declaration refers to three previous Declarations against which current progress has been measured. Organizations like the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) will continue to monitor malaria progress of all member countries who were in attendance. These commitments by endemic countries will go a long way to sustain the efforts to eliminate malaria.