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Remarks by President Bush on Malaria
Date:2/18/2008

vulnerable to malaria, especially pregnant women. Here in Tanzania, more than 2,400 health workers have been trained to provide specialized treatment that prevents malaria in expectant mothers.

Third, the initiative provides life-saving drugs. Here in Tanzania, the program has supported more than a million courses of treatment, and has trained more than 5,000 health workers to use them.

Fourth, the initiative supports the distribution of insecticide-treated bed nets, and Laura and I are about to distribute some of those bed nets. This is one of the simplest technologies imaginable, but it's also one of the most effective. Here in Tanzania, we're working with the government and partners such as the Global Fund to provide bed net vouchers for infants and pregnant mothers. Women can use these vouchers to buy bed nets at local shops at a huge discount. So far, an estimated 5 million vouchers have been distributed through these programs.

Today, I'm pleased to announce new steps in the bed net campaign. Within the next six months, the United States and Tanzania, in partnership with the World Bank and the Global Fund, will begin distributing 5.2 million free bed nets. This ambitious nationwide program will provide enough nets to protect every child between the ages of one and five in Tanzania.

The bed net campaign is supported by Tanzanian manufacturers, including A to Z Textiles, which we will visit later today. So as this campaign protects women and children from malaria, it also boasts -- boosts local economies. It helps develop a culture of bed net use that will be sustained long after relief programs have ended.

Over the past two years we've applied our strategy here in Tanzania, and we're seeing results. In June 2006, at the District Hospital in Muleba, more than 50 people died because of malaria. In June 2007, after a spraying campaign supported by our Malaria Initiative, the number of deaths had dropped to five. In Zanzibar the p
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SOURCE White House Press Office
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