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PMI: Presidents Malaria Initiative - Saving lives in Africa.

Malaria in Pregnancy

  Photo of Morogoro health worker giving a pregnant mother her IPTp drugs.
  An expectant mother takes her first dose of SP to prevent malaria, as part of her antenatal visit, at a health care facility in Tanzania.
Source: Karie Atkinson/USAID

Malaria infection during pregnancy poses serious health risks for both the mother and her unborn child. The prevention and treatment of malaria during pregnancy depend on a combination of malaria control measures, including the use of ITNs, prompt and effective treatment for malaria, and intermittent preventive treatment (IPTp). IPTp is an effective means of reducing the consequences of malaria in both the pregnant woman and her unborn child. Pregnant women in their second and third trimesters are administered at least two doses of the drug sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) at least one month apart.

In all countries where IPTp is recommended, PMI supports strengthening and expanding preventive activities for malaria in pregnancy as part of a partnership between malaria and reproductive health programs. PMI activities include purchasing SP, training health care workers in administering the drug, providing information about IPTp to pregnant women, distributing ITNs to pregnant women, and supporting prompt diagnosis and treatment of malaria in pregnant women.