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Approximately 230 million people live in Indonesia. The country is also home to over 20 anopheline vectors of malaria which transmit all four of the species of Plasmodium that routinely infect humans. A complex mosaic of risk of infection across this 5000-km-long archipelago of thousands of islands and distinctive habitats seriously challenges efforts to control malaria. Social, economic and political dimensions contribute to these complexities. This chapter examines malaria and its control in Indonesia, from the earliest efforts by malariologists of the colonial Netherlands East Indies, through the Global Malaria Eradication Campaign of the 1950s, the tumult following the coup d'état of 1965, the global resurgence of malaria through the 1980s and 1990s and finally through to the decentralization of government authority following the fall of the authoritarian Soeharto regime in 1998. We detail important methods of control and their impact in the context of the political systems that supported them. We examine prospects for malaria control in contemporary decentralized and democratized Indonesia with multidrug-resistant malaria and greatly diminished capacities for integrated malaria control management programs.

Original publication




Journal article


Adv Parasitol

Publication Date





41 - 175


Animals, Culicidae, Health Education, Humans, Indonesia, Malaria, Mosquito Control, Population Surveillance, Prevalence