Specifications for prepackaging antimalarial medicines
Report of a WHO technical consultation, 2-4 September 2003
Early diagnosis and prompt treatment with effective antimalarial medicines is the only lifesaving intervention for people afflicted with malaria. The effectiveness of treatment with antimalarial medicines is, however, threatened by the growing resistance of falciparum malaria to chloroquine and sulfadoxine–pyrimethamine, which were once effective against the disease.
As part of a global strategy to delay the rapid development of the parasite’s resistance to antimalarial medicines and to enhance the efficacy of treatment with antimalarial medicines, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that antimalarial medicines should always be used in combination, preferably with an artemisinin partner – a treatment known as artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT). The Roll Back Malaria (RBM) global initiative has set a target of reducing malaria mortality by 50% by 2010, and the early diagnosis and prompt treatment of the disease with effective antimalarial medicines are fundamental components of this strategy.