The Problem Malaria is a widespread and deadly disease concentrated in equatorial regions--primarily in sub-Saharan Africa, where ninety percent of malaria-related deaths occur. Each year, 400 million people become infected with malaria. Of those cases, the disease will prove fatal for 438,000 people. Seventy percent of these deaths are of children under five years old, making malaria one of the leading causes of child mortality in Africa. Even when non-fatal, malaria can damage children’s cognitive development. In many developing countries, malaria is the leading cause of death for pregnant women.