The Global Health Group seeks to inform national and regional malaria elimination efforts by building the evidence base for malaria elimination, and to inform decision-making by country leaders, global health leaders, and partners. To this end, the Global Health Group's Malaria Elimination Initiative convenes and serves as the secretariat for the Malaria Elimination Group (MEG), a group of 48 international malaria experts from 16 countries who strive to develop and disseminate a clear understanding of the intricacies of malaria elimination. Together, the Global Health Group and MEG are leading global efforts to strengthen the evidence base for malaria elimination and to capture data and experience on successes and challenges from countries in the current, pre-, and post-stages of malaria elimination.
In collaboration with the WHO Global Malaria Program, the MEG has formed a Case Study Advisory Committee (CSAC), a working group of MEG members and other experts that will guide case study development, methodologies and analysis. The committee will identify key gaps in evidence on malaria elimination that can be addressed through case study research, and provide guidance on the topics, contexts, methods and analysis of future cases studies. The CSAC is chaired by Dr. Marcel Tanner and held its first meeting in November, 2011.
The MEG has established the MEG Economics and Finance Working Group, which guides the Malaria Elimination Initiative's work to determine the costs, benefits, and financing mechanisms required to support malaria elimination. The Economics and Finance Working Group is chaired by Dr. Dean Jamison held its first meeting in 2008.
With leadership from the MEG and Global Health Group, The Lancet published a special series of four papers and four comments on malaria elimination in November 2010. The Lancet Series examines the technical, operational, and financial challenges that confront the 36 malaria-eliminating countries. In four papers, the Series provides an overview of elimination, quantifies the relative technical and operational feasibility of elimination, and investigates the challenges, risks, operational requirements, costs and benefits of achieving elimination and preventing the reintroduction of malaria.
In 2009, the MEG published two major works on malaria elimination which synthesize current evidence and understanding of elimination: Shrinking the Malaria Map: A Guide on Malaria Elimination for Policy Makers and its companion, Shrinking the Malaria Map: A Prospectus on Malaria Elimination. Translations of these documents into Chinese, French, Portuguese and Spanish are available in electronic format. The Shrinking the Malaria Map publications and other malaria elimination resources are available on the MEG website.
Through regular meetings, consultation and debate, the MEG draws on current and past research, individual expertise, and information from country experience to articulate practical evidence and experience-based advice regarding the decision of whether, when, and how to pursue elimination.
The Malaria Elimination Group’s seventh meeting was held in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates (UAE), from December 10 – December 13, 2012 and was co-hosted with the UAE University. Meeting participants included senior representatives of malaria programs from countries including the UAE, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Sultanate of Oman, the Islamic Republic of Iran,and the World Health Organization. Presentations and discussions at the meeting focused on malaria elimination in the Middle East, as well as strategies for active surveillance and new tools developed through operational research. The meeting also included a half-day study tour led by the Health Authority of Abu Dhabi and highlighted Al Ain’s malaria vector control activities to prevent the reestablishment of malaria transmission. The meeting included presentations on global elimination efforts including: regional elimination updates, country presentations on progress and challenges in eliminating malaria, and operational research for elimination settings.