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World Malaria Day on 25 April 2012, is a time for examining the progress we have made towards malaria control and elimination and to renew efforts towards achieving the target of zero malaria deaths by 2015.

We have come a long way towards realising this goal since the first World Malaria Day four years ago, when it was estimated that a child died every 30 seconds of malaria. The huge increase in support for malaria control interventions in recent years means we can now acknowledge a reduction in the death rate; where once over a million people died of the disease annually, the figure is now closer to 790,000. This is progress and it shows that what we are doing is working. However we can’t afford to ease back until this number is zero, and this year everyone in the malaria community is discussing the remaining obstacles we face in the fight against malaria.