Elimination Meets Reality in Hispaniola

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Science  14 May 2010:
Vol. 328, Issue 5980, pp. 850-851
DOI: 10.1126/science.328.5980.850

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There is absolutely no reason for malaria to persist on the island of Hispaniola, given that all the other islands in the Caribbean have rid themselves of this mosquito-borne disease. And the Dominican Republic, which shares the island with Haiti, has driven cases to remarkably low levels. By many counts, the country is well on the path to elimination, its stated aim. But it can't get there unless Haiti, where malaria is rife, achieves the same goal. Hispaniola's fledging program to eliminate malaria, now sidetracked by the earthquake, illustrates the difficulties that arise when ambitious goals collide with reality.

  • * Leslie Roberts visited Dajabón and Ouanaminthe on a reporting trip in October 2009.