control activities. Four government agencies and many nongovernmental organizations in the United States are actively involved in malaria-related activities. There are also numerous overseas organizations, governmental and nongovernmental, that actively support such activities worldwide.
The complexity and variability of malaria, the actual and potential scientific advances in several areas of malariology, and most important the worsening worldwide situation argue strongly for an ongoing mechanism to assess and influence current and future U.S. efforts in malaria research and control.
The committee strongly recommends the establishment of a national advisory body on malaria.
In addition to fulfilling a much needed coordinating function among U.S.-based agencies and between the U.S. and international efforts, the national advisory body could monitor the status of U.S. involvement in malaria research and control, assess the relevant application of knowledge, identify areas requiring further research, make recommendations to the major funding agencies, and provide a resource for legislators and others interested in scientific policy related to malaria. The national advisory body could convene specific task-oriented scientific working groups to review research and control activities and to make recommendations, when appropriate, for changes in priorities and new initiatives.
The committee believes that the national advisory body should be part of, and appointed by, a neutral and nationally respected scientific body and that it should actively encourage the participation of governmental and nongovernmental organizations, industry, and university scientists in advising on the direction of U.S. involvement in malaria research and control.
The increasing magnitude of the malaria problem during the past decade and the unpredictability of changes in human, parasite, and vector determinants of transmission and disease point strongly to the need for such a national advisory body, which can be responsive to rapidly changing problems, and advances in scientific research, relating to global efforts to control malaria.
Malaria control is in crisis in many areas of the world. People are contracting and dying of severe malaria in unprecedented numbers. To address these problems, the committee strongly encourages a balanced research agenda. Two basic areas of research require high priority. Research that will lead to improved delivery of existing interventions for malaria, and the development of new tools for the control of malaria.