The Burundi government declared a malaria outbreak earlier this month after reporting a total of 1,784,965 cases of malaria through mid-March this year.
While the entire country is reporting high burden of malaria, the northern, central and eastern regions are most affected. The 10 most affected provinces include Karusi, Gitega, Muyinga, Kirundo, Kayanza, Ngozi, Bubanza, Cankuzo, Cibitoke and Ruyigi representing 63% of the population at risk.
Health officials say the slow-onset malaria outbreak started in late 2015. The country reported 4,716,152 cases of malaria in 2014, 5,365,721 cases in 2015 and 7,813,958 in 2016; reflecting a 14% and 46% increase in malaria caseload in 2015 and 2016, respectively.
With an incidence rate of 51.9%, malaria has been the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in Burundi, accounting for over 50% of healthcare facility visits and 45% of hospitalizations in 2015.