In Honor of World Malaria Day, The Carter Center Celebrates the Dominican Republic’s Receipt of PAHO’s Malaria Champions of the Americas Prize

Close-up photo of the award

In honor of World Malaria Day, The Carter Center celebrates the Dominican Republic Ministry of Health, which received a 2023 Malaria Champions of the Americas prize from the Pan American Health Organization for its notable progress in eliminating malaria in Los Tres Brazos neighborhood of the capital, Santo Domingo. The award recognizes the efforts led by the community-based health workers operating under the ministry’s Center for Prevention and Control of Vector-borne and Zoonotic Diseases, known by its abbreviation CECOVEZ.

Los Tres Brazos is one of three remaining malaria-endemic urban areas in the country, and it has affected the capital region since 2014. With assistance from The Carter Center, CECOVEZ established community health teams to conduct active screening, testing, and treatment for malaria, which has reduced the disease in Los Tres Brazos from a peak of 162 cases in 2015 to only two in 2023.

  • Award winners group photo

    CECOVEZ Director Dr. Cruz Raposo (left) accepts the 2023 Malaria Champions of America award on behalf of the Dominican Republic Ministry of Health alongside the other 2023 award winners. Left to right: Dr. Cassio Peterka of Brazil, Dr. María N. Colín of México, Dr. Helene Hiwat of Suriname, and Mr. Kim Bautista of Belize.

Nationwide, the Dominican Republic has made significant progress, reducing reported malaria cases to around 300 cases per year since 2021 – an 89% reduction from the 2,711 cases reported in 2007.  This progress contributed to the Dominican Republic being inducted into the WHO’s "E-2025" initiative, which furnishes 25 countries with specialized support and technical guidance as they make strides toward malaria elimination by 2025.

Since 2008, The Carter Center has partnered with the Haiti and Dominican Republic ministries of health to accelerate malaria elimination on the shared island of Hispaniola, the last reservoir of the mosquito-borne disease in the Caribbean.

The Carter Center commends the Dominican Republic Ministry of Health for their tireless work to eliminate malaria and we join them again in celebrating the well-earned award of the Malaria Champions of the Americas prize.

Learn more about the Center's Hispaniola Initiative »

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