organizations have been receiving money to control malaria since 1914, when
control activities were necessary to allow soldiers to train year round in
states endemic with malaria. Malaria control was even pivotal in the
construction of the Panama Canal.
In 1906 the disease afflicted over 80 percent of the employees working on the
Canal. In 1933 malaria still affected 30 percent of the population in the
valley. In conjunction with later organization and efforts the Tennessee
Valley Authority eliminated malaria by reducing mosquito breeding grounds,
among other things. In 1942 the Office of Malaria Control in War Areas
(MCWA) was established to combat malaria and other vector borne diseases
around military training bases in the southern United States
during World War II. The goal was to prevent the reintroduction of
malaria into civilian populations. Soldiers were either stationed in
areas of the United
had large mosquito populations, or they had contracted the disease in other
countries endemic with malaria. MCWA was also responsible for training
state and local health department officials in effective strategies to control
malarial outbreaks. MCWA was the leader in fighting malaria until 1946
when it was transformed into the Communicable Disease Center (CDC) of the U.S.
Public Health Service, what we now know as the Center for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC).
the first years after inception, the CDC worked in conjunction with the State
and local health agencies of the 13 states where malaria was still endemic, as
part of the National Malaria Eradication Program. The CDC, located in Atlanta,
Georgia, was founded in an
area highly affected by malaria, the southeastern United States, where malaria was
endemic at the time. When the CDC began
measures to eradicate malaria, the program consisted primarily of DDT
application to the interior of dwellings and in some cases to entire regions
where malaria had been reported in recent years. Other measures included drainage, removal of mosquito breeding sites, and occasional insecticide
spraying from aircrafts. Controlling
water levels and insecticide applications effectively reduced the number of
mosquito breeding grounds, thus battling the problem at its source, killing the
vector that transmits the disease from sick to healthy individuals. These efforts had impressive results. In 1949 over 4,650,00 homes had been treated
with pesticides and the United
States was declared free of malaria as a
major public health concern.
Malaria was eradicated in the United States
in 1951, as outlined by the National Malaria Society criteria for eradication: "Malaria
may be assumed to be no longer endemic in any given area when no primary
indigenous case has occurred there for three years".