CountryPapua New Guinea

Malaria is highly endemic in Papua New Guinea (PNG). The NMCP aims to achieve substantial and sustained reductions in malaria cases over the next decade in order to reach the country’s 2025 malaria elimination goal. Within the past decade PNG has reduced malaria cases by 37% and malaria-attributed deaths by 57%. Malaria in PNG is caused primarily by Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax, but P. malariae and P. ovale infections also occur. The major vectors include Anopheles punctulatus, An. farauti, and An. koliensis; more recently An. longirostris, An. hinesorum, and An. bancroftii have been incriminated as important vectors.

Geographic and ecological variation in PNG affect malaria transmission patterns. Most of the human population is concentrated in the highland areas and the coastal lowlands of PNG. The lowlands and northern coast experience perennial malaria transmission, while the south coast and mountainous highlands experience unstable and seasonal transmission. Populations at higher risk of severe infection include children under five years of age, pregnant women, and groups that may lack protective immunity, such as populations that move between non-endemic to endemic areas within the country.

Quick Facts

  • 94% of the total population at risk (total population: 7.3 million)
  • 1.1 million presumed and confirmed cases of malaria and 307 deaths in 2013
  • 153.8 Annual Parasite Index (cases/1,000 population/year)
  • Dominant malaria species: P. falciparum (87%)
  • Elimination goal: zero indigenous cases and zero deaths by 2025