Malaria: A zoom on Africa’s number one killer infection

According to available statistics malaria kills one person every 30 seconds , 3000 everyday, most of whom are children.

This is enough reason why international bodies, NGOs governments, individuals have been working hands- in-gloves to roll back the infection.

Malaria: Understanding the infection

Malaria is a health condition caused by a parasite called Plasmodium which is transmitted through an infected female anopheles mosquito.
World Health Organisation’s record of 2017 have it that 219 million cases of malaria were reported worldwide, 92% from Africa alone.
Children under the age of 5 years are the most hit.
The age gap recorded 62% deaths from malaria during this period.
Other vulnerable groups are pregnant women, patients living with HIV/AIDS and travellers to endemic regions.

Rolling Back malaria: A collective effort

Experts in the fight against malaria have been engaged in a number of campaigns to inform the population that the fight against malaria is collective.

At individual and family level, communities are called upon to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds.

This is possible by;

# Draining all stagnant water,
# Clearing all the bushes and overgrown grass around the homes
# Regular use of insect repellants and other electrical devices.
#The use of insecticide treated mosquito nets
# The use of indoor sprays.

Inspite of these measures, medical experts say the proper management of malaria requires an early diagnosis and prompt treatment with antimalarial medication.

Malaria: The symptoms

Common symptoms of malaria include; fever chills/shivering, headaches, joint pains, loss of appetite, vomiting and, in severe cases, loss of consciousness, convulsions, severe body weakness, anemia, jaundice, appearence of dark (Coca-Cola colored) urine etc.

Cameroon government’s approach in fighting Malaria

The Ministry of Public Health has adopted a WHO algorithm for the management of malaria .

Simple :(uncomplicated malaria )a combination of two medication with artemisinin derivative.
The combination: amodiaquine + artesunate (AS-AQ) and artemether + lumefantrine (AL).

There are however many variants of these medications in Cameroon sold under different trade names.

Apart from research centres, government is presently working with development partners for the distribution of treated mosquiteo nets.

Rolling back malaria: What the Doctor says

Findings from investigations show that there is a large variety of fake malaria drugs in the market:
# Patients should always seek medical help and abstain from auto medication
#Cases of severe malaria are subjected to intravenous/intramuscular treatment.
Malaria in pregnancy is classified as severe .

Every year on 25 April, people around the globe observe World Malaria Day to raise awareness and funds for the treatment and prevention of the disease. This year, the theme for the day is “Zero malaria starts with me” and it is being hosted by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Benly Anchunda



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