Since February, Yom Nob has been in the Ta Sanh Health Center observing samples taken from malaria patients in six nearby villages. The laboratory officer has twenty years of experience working with malaria, but he was seeing something new.
Rapid diagnostic tests in the area were equipped to detect more common kinds of malaria-causing parasites – Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax. But the tests were unable to detect malaria in some of the district’s patients, even though they exhibited all the symptoms of the illness.
“We have never seen this in our villages before,” Yom Nob told VOA Khmer last month.