Every year on the 20th August, the world comes together to celebrate the life and discoveries of the British doctor Sir Ronald Ross. You may not have heard of him but he is responsible for a revolution in malaria research.
Wind back 121 years and on this day in 1887, Sir Ronald Ross found out that female mosquitoes that transmit malaria to humans. We’ve produced a podcast episode dedicated to establishing exactly which mosquito causes malaria, as it can be confusing. Listen to the episode below – it’s only two minutes in duration.
His discovery was revolutionary, to say the least. It was the spark for the development of innovative ways to prevent and treat many mosquito-borne diseases, not just malaria. Several years later, in 1902, Ross was awarded a Nobel Prize in medicine for his work.
Since the 1930s, The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine have hosted the World Mosquito Day celebrations.
Other celebrations include Malaria No More’s ‘Mozzy Air’ campaign, which encourages anti-malarial measures when flying to malaria zones, as well as Nothing But Nets’ campaigns, aimed to provide mosquito nets for communities in need.
However, despite the incredible findings of scientists such as Ronald Ross, mosquitos are still the world’s deadliest animal; causing carnage through deadly diseases such as Dengue, Zika, and of course, malaria. In fact, malaria is said to have killed over 54 billion people – that’s half the people to have ever lived! In recent years, figures state that over 1 million people die every year from malaria. Not to mention other mosquito-borne diseases. It’s our job to fight back.
Making a Difference
Despite the inspiring work scientists and researchers make, more needs to be done. You can donate, volunteer, fundraise and much more!
It is now easier than ever to make a difference when it comes to malaria elimination.
The options are endless, it’s up to you to make a difference. It’s time to take action, and this starts by raising awareness – so why not share this article?