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Malaria and migration in the Greater Mekong Subregion

Edited by: Deyer Gopinath (, Zai-Xing Zhang (, Xiao-Nong Zhou ( )

With a rapidly growing population that is becoming increasingly mobile, the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) is facing multitudinous challenges in the control of communicable diseases both within and across its borders. Indeed, the number of people from the East Asia and Pacific region living outside their countries of origin has increased by nearly 60% over the past 14 years (2000–2013), and, owing to the wide disparities in incomes across countries in the region, intraregional people mobility is even higher. Population mobility is a serious challenge to malaria elimination in the GMS requiring an inter-sectoral approach. The geographic expansion of Plasmodium falciparum resistance to artemisinin derivatives in GMS is an urgent public health concern, which has caused global concerns. The major risk for malaria transmission interruption in GMS is that surveillance as an intervention to block the malaria transmission is difficult to target the migrated population across-board.

The emergence of artemisinin resistance in the GMS will have catastrophic consequences if the problem is not contained and eliminated. World Health Organization (WHO) launched the Global Plan for Artemisinin Resistance Containment (GPARC) and the Framework for Emergency Response to Artemisinin Resistance (ERAR). The WHO ERAR has a distinct objective to address issues on mobile and migrant populations. The WHO ERAR project has completed a review of the current malaria situation across the GMS and within each of the six GMS countries from the perspective of migration. It considers the unique situation of each country and the common challenges to the region. Current responses and gaps to block transmission of malaria in GMS are identified and recommendations for future actions are clearly outlined. Therefore, this special issue is focus on the malaria transmission patterns in each country of GMS as well as the relationship between malaria transmission and population migration. 

  1. Scoping Review

    Malaria elimination in Lao PDR: the challenges associated with population mobility

    Although the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) is comparatively small landlocked country with patterns of both in- and out-migration, its human migration situation has been poorly studied. This is des...

    Sengchanh Kounnavong, Deyer Gopinath, Bouasy Hongvanthong, Chanthalone Khamkong and Odai Sichanthongthip

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2017 6:81

    Published on: 25 April 2017

  2. Research Article

    Lessons on malaria control in the ethnic minority regions in Northern Myanmar along the China border, 2007–2014

    For many countries where malaria is endemic, the burden of malaria is high in border regions. In ethnic minority areas along the Myanmar-China border, residents have poor access to medical care for diagnosis a...

    Ru-Bo Wang, Jia-Qiang Dong, Zhi-Gui Xia, Tao Cai, Qing-Feng Zhang, Yao Zhang, Yang-Hui Tian, Xiao-Ying Sun, Guang-Yun Zhang, Qing-Pu Li, Xiao-Yu Xu, Jia-Yin Li and Jun Zhang

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2016 5:95

    Published on: 6 October 2016

  3. Research Article

    Assessment of malaria control consultation and service posts in Yunnan, P. R. China

    This paper seeks to assess the function of malaria control consultation and service posts (MCCSPs) that are located on the border areas of Yunnan province, P.R. China, as a strategy for eliminating malaria amo...

    Xu-Can Zeng, Xiao-Dong Sun, Jian-Xiong Li, Meng-Ni Chen, Dao-Wei Deng, Cang-Lin Zhang, Zu-Rui Lin, Zi-You Zhou, Yao-Wu Zhou, Ya-Ming Yang and Sheng Zhou

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2016 5:102

    Published on: 4 October 2016

  4. Research Article

    Multi-epitope chimeric antigen used as a serological marker to estimate Plasmodium falciparum transmission intensity in the border area of China-Myanmar

    Following the decline of malaria transmission in many countries and regions, serological parameters have become particularly useful for estimating malaria transmission in low-intensity areas. This study evalua...

    Mei-Xue Yao, Xiao-Dong Sun, Yu-Hui Gao, Zhi-Bin Cheng, Wei-Wei Deng, Jia-Jia Zhang and Heng Wang

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2016 5:98

    Published on: 7 September 2016

  5. Case Study

    Effectiveness and impact of the cross-border healthcare model as implemented by non-governmental organizations: case study of the malaria control programs by health poverty action on the China-Myanmar border

    In the Yunnan province of China, 18 counties in six prefectures border Myanmar. Due to its particular combination of geographic features, climate conditions, and cultural landscape, the area provides a suitabl...

    Jun Zhang, Jia-Qiang Dong, Jia-Ying Li, Yue Zhang, Yang-Hui Tian, Xiao-Ying Sun, Guang-Yun Zhang, Qing-Pu Li, Xiao-Yu Xu and Tao Cai

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2016 5:80

    Published on: 1 September 2016

  6. Research Article

    Malaria control along China-Myanmar Border during 2007–2013: an integrated impact evaluation

    Implementing effective interventions remain a lot of difficulties along all border regions. The emergence of artemisinin resistance of Plasmodium falciparum strains in the Greater Mekong Subregion is a matter of ...

    Jian-Wei Xu, Yong Li, Heng-Lin Yang, Jun Zhang, Zai-Xing Zhang, Ya-Ming Yang, Hong-Ning Zhou, Joshua Havumaki, Hua-Xian Li, Hui Liu, Hua Zhou, Xin-Yu Xie, Jia-Xiang Dong, Yue Zhang, Xiao-Ying Sun, Bo Li…

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2016 5:75

    Published on: 10 August 2016

  7. Research Article

    Investigation and control of a Plasmodium falciparum malaria outbreak in Shan Special Region II of Myanmar along the China-Myanmar Border from June to December 2014

    From 2007 to 2013, intensive control measures reduced malaria burden by 90 % along the China-Myanmar border. However, despite these measures a P. falciparum malaria outbreak was reported in the Shan Special Regio...

    Hui Liu, Jian-Wei Xu, Heng-Lin Yang, Mei Li, Cheng-De Sun, Yi-Jie Yin, Zhi-Liang Zheng, Guang-Yun Zhang, Ai-Shui Yu, Yong-Hui Yang, Chun-Hui Li and Shui Ai

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2016 5:32

    Published on: 25 April 2016

  8. Research Article

    Co-infections with Babesia microti and Plasmodium parasites along the China-Myanmar border

    Babesiosis is an emerging health risk in several parts of the world. However, little is known about the prevalence of Babesia in malaria-endemic countries. The area along the China-Myanmar border in Yunnan is a m...

    Xia Zhou, Sheng-Guo Li, Shen-Bo Chen, Jia-Zhi Wang, Bin Xu, He-Jun Zhou, Hong-Xiang Zhu Ge, Jun-Hu Chen and Wei Hu

    Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2013 2:24

    Published on: 3 October 2013