New ways to stop malaria from spreading

KYW Staff
October 18, 2019 - 4:00 am
Malaria test results.

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KYW Newsradio’s Medical Reports are sponsored by Independence Blue Cross. 

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — We don't think about it here in the United States, but malaria is still a major problem in the world. Each year, there are about 3 million new cases of malaria in Africa and 1 million deaths. 

Public health officials try to stem the spread by distributing netting and hoping to control the mosquito population. 

But over the past handful of years, they've been trying something else and it appears to be working: The World Health Organization is monitoring texts from millions of hand mobile phones and tracking the spread. 

This allows them to stay ahead of the curve by anticipating and reacting to the information. This use of technology to track the flu and other illnesses is in its infancy, but it's the wave of the future.