Combating Malaria in Kenya through Collaborative Population Health Education: A Systematic Review and Pilot Case Study

Hester Lacey, Nityanand Jain (Coresponding Author), Mai Sugimoto, Masako Shimato (Coresponding Author), Ieva Reine, Kevin Oria

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: Malaria continues to be a public health problem in Kenya, with an estimated 37.2 million people at high risk of the disease. The disease burden is compounded by inequalities in health service availability, housing, socioeconomic conditions, and access to education. Objectives: We aimed to determine the status of community-based, health education interventions. Based on the findings, to develop an educational module for medical students to combat malaria in Kenya. Methods: A systematic review was conducted to identify different educational interventions, their successes and limitations, and legal challenges leading to low uptake and adherence to malaria prevention interventions from 2000–2023. Consequently, a 6-week online educational pilot was conducted with healthcare students from Kenya, Japan, the UK, and Cyprus. Results: Despite developing a national malaria strategy and monitoring and evaluation strategies, Kenya has not been able to meet the incidence reduction targets set by the World Health Organisation, underscoring the need for more work in identifying the barriers to implementing strategies and optimising the distribution of public health interventions. Student teams proposed innovative solutions, including two-tier malaria control strategies, maternal malaria clinical education, community awareness through schools and NGOs, and a 10-year health system strengthening and immunisation plan. Conclusions: Public education regarding prevention strategies and increasing their adoption remains a key challenge in combating malaria in Kenya. In this regard, digital tools can facilitate international collaborative health education and exchange of best practices, allowing students and faculty to engage across boundaries and prepare them to be future-ready physicians connected to the global community.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)664 -683
Number of pages20
JournalInfectious Diseases
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Malaria
  • Kenya
  • sub-saharan Africa
  • Prevention
  • Education
  • medical students
  • collaboration

Field of Science*

  • 3.3 Health sciences
  • 5.3 Educational sciences

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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