Mining for Gold, Finding Malaria

Illegal mining and malaria have made themselves at home in El Callao, Venezuela’s booming gold capital.
 
Now, the country once hailed for a vigorous malaria elimination program is seeing an alarming increase in malaria cases among miners, who often sleep in the mines. Cases jumped 69% from 2016-2017, and the Venezuelan Medical Federation said cases—650,000 so far—will rise at least another 60% this year.
 
The country’s overwhelmed public health system is ill-positioned to counter the threat amid mosquito net shortages, the breakdown of water-pumping systems and the fumigation program, and black-market pricing for antimalarial meds.

IRIN

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