Malaria is spreading in east China's Anhui Province that reported 17,917 cases by September 25 this year, according to the provincial health department.
The malaria cases increased by 89.8 percent from the same period of last year, said the department.
The cases were mainly reported in Bozhou, Huaibei, Suzhou, Bengbu and Fuyang in the north of the province.
Malaria cases have been on the rise since 2000 in these areas, according to the department.
The department has issued an emergency notice asking local government authorities to strengthen the monitoring of the epidemic and promote the prevention and treatment knowledge among people to curb its spread.
A check on the malaria prevention and control in the disease-hit areas will be carried out in the first 20 days of this month, said the notice.
Those officials whose lax supervision caused a spread of the disease will be severely punished, according to the department.
Malaria is an infection of the blood that is carried from person to person by mosquitoes. The disease, which can be fatal, is widespread mainly in the tropical areas of Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Symptoms of malaria infection include fever, headaches, sweating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and so on.
China reported 39,656 malaria cases in 2005, 45 of them dead, according to the Ministry of Health.
(Xinhua News Agency October 4, 2006)