PRIME Minister Rick Houenipwela has been applauded for championing the fight against Malaria in the Pacific region.
Foreign leaders and donor partners have particularly commended the Prime Minister for initiating the signing of the Asia Pacific Leaders’ Malaria Alliance (APLMA’s) 2030 goal to eliminate malaria from the Asia-Pacific region.
Prime Minister Houenipwela, Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neil and Vanuatu Prime Minister Charlot Salwai signed the APLMA in London at the margins of CHOGM early this year.
Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and PNG account for 92 percent of all cases in the Western Pacific Region.
Consequently, Asia Pacific’s ability to achieve elimination will hinge on Melanesia.
Speaking during the Malaria Summit, Houenipwela said the support of development partners and health organisations are crucial to allow pacific countries to innovate and modernise their systems.
“In the Solomon Islands, the Global Fund is piloting a Cash-on-Delivery model that allows us to fully integrate elimination of malaria as an integral part of our health system.
“This approach to financing is changing the way we deliver health services. Innovative funding approaches must be part of the solution to eliminate malaria,” he told the summit.
The Prime Minister said he is also encouraged by the new partnership between the Global Fund and the Asian Development Bank.
This partnership will offer the region new ways of reaching the SDGs, by investing directly in results.
“There is much to do. But, with all our collective support, I have no doubt we will eliminate malaria from Solomon Islands, from Melanesia, from the Asia-Pacific region and ultimately from the whole world. I am convinced we will be the generation that eradicated malaria,” he said.