Deaths due to malaria by age, region, country, and year (Global), 1980-2010
With this interactive tool, explore trends in global malaria mortality between 1980 and 2010. You can see how the cumulative probability of death from malaria (the number of people out of 1,000 who are likely to die from malaria) increased until around 2004, after which the cumulative probability rapidly decreased.
You can also focus on specific countries, display the total number of deaths from malaria, and compare different age groups.
Tips for using this tool are provided under the “how to explore” tab below.
- You can change the indicators displayed in the chart by clicking the axis labels on the left side and underneath the chart. Choosing “Cumulative prob. of death (5+)” on the y-axis and choosing “Cumulative prob. of death (under 5)” on the x-axis will enable you to see trends in the number of older children and adults out of 1,000 likely to die from malaria, as well as the number of children under 5 out of 1,000 likely to die from malaria.
- On the right, select specific countries that interest you.
- Choose either a bar, line, or bubble chart in the top right corner.
- For the bar and bubble charts, hit play and watch changes over time. You can click on the timeline to start the chart at a specific year (for example, clicking about halfway along the timeline will allow you to hit play and begin the visualization at 1995).
- Once you've selected specific countries that interest you, click the tool symbol in the bottom right corner and try lowering the opacity of the nonselected countries to isolate countries of interest.
See how the likelihood of dying from malaria rapidly decreased after 2004. Select a bubble chart and choose “Cumulative prob. of death (5+)” on the y-axis and “Cumulative prob. of death (under 5)” on the x-axis. Hit play and watch as many countries (shown as bubbles) move right and up. As the bubbles move right, they show that the probability of death from malaria in children under 5 is rising, and as they move up, they show that the probability of death from malaria in older children and adults is rising.
Watch until the timeline reaches 2004, and hit pause. When you hit play again, you’ll see that most countries start a dramatic reversal in that trend. Select Uganda in the country list on the right, and you’ll see a specific example of how the likelihood of dying from malaria decreased rapidly after 2004.
Cumulative prob. of death: the total number of people out of 1,000 who are likely to die from malaria in the absence of all other causes from birth to age 80
Cumulative prob. of death (15+): the number of people between ages 15 to 80 out of 1,000 who are likely to die from malaria in the absence of all other causes
Cumulative prob. of death (5+): the number of people between ages 5 to 80 out of 1,000 who are likely to die from malaria in the absence of all other causes
Cumulative prob. of death (under 5): the number of children under age 5 out of 1,000 who are likely to die from malaria in the absence of all other causes
No. of malaria deaths: the total number of deaths from malaria
No. of malaria deaths (15+): the number of deaths from malaria in people aged 15 and over
No. of malaria deaths (5+): the number of deaths from malaria in people aged 5 and over
No. of malaria deaths (under 5): the number of deaths from malaria in children under age 5
Population: the total population of a country
Population (15+): the number of people aged 15 and over in a country
Population (5+): the number of people aged 5 and over in a country
Population (under 5): the number of children under age 5 in a country
Data and Methods
Data for download
Malaria deaths and cumulative probability of death (per 1,000) for all ages by country, and year (Global), 1980-2010 (75KB xls)
Malaria deaths and cumulative probability of death (per 1,000) by age group, country, and year (Global), 1980-2010 (82KB xls)
Related Visualizations & other Tools
Related Publications & Presentations
Murray CJL, Rosenfeld LC, Lim SS, Andrews KG, Foreman KJ, Haring D, Fullman N, Naghavi M, Lozano R, Lopez AD. Global malaria mortality between 1980 and 2010: a systematic analysis. The Lancet. 2012; 379:413-431.
Related News & Events
In February 2012, IHME published in The Lancet global estimates for malaria mortality: Global malaria mortality between 1980 and 2010: a systematic analysis. The new estimates differed from multiple previous assessments of malaria mortality at the global level and in individual countries, the most recent being the World Malaria Report 2011 by the World Health Organization (WHO).
- We based our estimates on the broadest range of available data to date for 105 countries: a total of 1,150 site years of data from 1980 to 2010. This includes data from vital registration systems and from verbal autopsy studies.
- Both WHO and IHME use verbal autopsy studies for estimating mortality from all causes and for estimating mortality from malaria specifically. The World Malaria Report 2011 relied on verbal autopsy data for its child mortality estimates for some of the regions it studied. The report says, “Child malaria deaths were estimated using a verbal autopsy multi-cause model (VAMCM) developed by the WHO Child Health Epidemiology Reference Group (CHERG) to estimate causes of death for children aged 1-59 months in countries with less than 80% of vital registration coverage.” IHME used a wider range of verbal autopsy studies to generate its estimates and included adult deaths.
- WHO does not use verbal autopsy studies for estimates of adult deaths from malaria in sub-Saharan Africa, but it does use verbal autopsy studies for estimates of adult deaths in other areas. This is based on two assumptions. The first is the assumption – taught in medical and public health schools – that adults develop immunity from early exposure to malaria and do not die from the disease. The second is the assumption that verbal autopsy studies are not accurate enough to diagnose malaria, because the symptoms of malaria can be similar to other causes of death. IHME, using vital registration data and verbal autopsy studies for both children and adults, found that verbal autopsy studies yield conservative estimates of malaria mortality, meaning that the true number could be even higher.
- For African countries, WHO estimates are based on a model of malaria mortality that takes into account only population growth and the effects of vector control. IHME’s estimates include the effect of chloroquine resistance, the scale-up of artemisinin-combination treatment, environmental factors such as rainfall, and broader socioeconomic determinants.
- To overcome misclassification of malaria deaths attributed to other cases, IHME used an approach developed by IHME Assistant Professor Dr. Mohsen Naghavi and colleagues to account for changes in the International Classification of Diseases and Injuries. With this approach, IHME redistributed deaths that had been called “fever of other and unknown origin,” “disseminated intravascular coagulation,” “other and unspecified infectious diseases,” and “sequelae of other and unspecified infectious and parasitic diseases.” As a result, some of those deaths were reclassified as malaria deaths.
- IHME’s estimates confirm some findings from previous studies. For example, they show that malaria deaths increased by three times through the 1980s and 1990s to a peak in 2004. Previous studies also show an increase in malaria deaths in this period of two to three times. Both the IHME study and previous studies have noted an association with increasing chloroquine resistance.
For a detailed discussion of our methods, please see the Web Appendix with the journal article.