Guyana has seen a whopping decline in the number of malaria cases between 2000 and 2015, according to US Ambassador to Guyana, Perry Holloway during his address at the launch of a new malaria project on Thursday at Cara Lodge, Quamina Street, Georgetown.According to Holloway, “With a 58 per cent reduction in (malaria) cases from 2000 to 2015, Guyana has made excellent progress in reducing malaria”.While applauding the efforts of the Public Health Ministry along with the US Embassy, Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) and other agencies, Holloway noted efforts should not stagnate as Guyana still had a long way to go.According to the World Malaria Report of 2017, some 445,000 deaths were recorded in 2016 while 446,000 were recorded in 2015 globally.The Report says that the World Health Organisation (WHO) African Region accounted for 91 per cent of all malaria deaths in 2016 followed by the WHO South-East Asia Region, which recorded six per cent of the deaths.It, however, states that “15 countries accounted for 80 per cent of global malaria deaths in 2016; all of these countries are in sub-Saharan Africa, except for India. All regions recorded reductions in mortality in 2016 when compared with 2010, with the exception of the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region, where mortality rates remained virtually unchanged in the period.“The largest decline occurred in the WHO regions of South-East Asia (44 per cent); Africa (37 per cent) and the Americas (27 per cent). However, between 2015 and 2016, mortality rates stalled in the WHO regions of South-East Asia, the Western Pacific and Africa, and increased in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Americas”.Around the globe, more countries are beginning to move towards the elimination of the dreadful disease. In fact, some 44 countries were reporting fewer than 10,000 malaria-infected persons in 2016, the Report detailed.In fact, Kyrgyzstan and Sri Lanka were certified by WHO as malaria free in 2016. In 2016, WHO identified 21 countries with the potential to eliminate malaria by the year 2020. WHO is working along with the Governments in these countries – known as “E-2020 countries” – to support their elimination acceleration goals.On Tuesday, Guyana joined the rest of the world in observing World Malaria Day. This year, the event was held under the theme, “Ready to beat malaria”.