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More efforts to beat malaria unveiled

26th April 2012
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Vice President Dr Mohammed Gharib Bilal cuts a ribbon to inaugurate a report on the implementation of strategies for eradicating malaria in Tanzania mainland at the climax of Malaria Day celebrations held in Dar es Salaam yesterday.

Vice President Dr Mohammed Gharib Bilal yesterday said the government is preparing a national strategy of distributing mosquito nets in schools to make the use of bed nets sustainable.

Dr Bilal revealed this in Dar es Salaam during celebrations to mark the World Malaria Day which was held at national level in Dar es Salaam.

He said in ensuring that the use of bed nets were sustainable and attain 80 percent target, various strategies were underway including distributing the nets to pregnant mothers, children under one year.

Apart from using mosquito nets the public was reminded to fight the malaria-spreading mosquitoes by destroying their breeding areas such as stagnant water ponds and overgrown grass around houses.

He said indoor residual spraying was going on in the Lake Zone where by 94 percent of the targeted households have been reached.

Dr Bilal said other interventions taken by the government as the mosquito killing project being implemented in Dar es Salaam by the governments of Tanzania and Cuba.

He said the government in collaboration with LABIOFAM Company from Cuba was constructing a factory at Kibaha for manufacturing pesticides for killing mosquito larvicides.

He said malaria can be eliminated, calling on people to visit the health facilities once they suspect that they have malaria, so that they can get treatment.

The Vice President also launched a report on the strategies of fighting malaria in the Mainland in the last ten years.

The report shows how the resources which were directed in the war against malaria were spent, while the compiled statistics show that malaria cases have dropped.

The Minister for Health and Social Welfare Dr Hadji Mponda, said that the ministry’s statistics show that malaria was the leading cause of deaths compared to other diseases.

He said the ministry had a five-year plan (2008-2013) explaining various strategies to fight malaria in the country.

On Monday an international lobby –“United Against Malaria” unveiled door to door campaigns to educate the public, specifically in rural areas on the symptoms and proper treatment of the killer disease.

John Hopkins University’s Director of Projects Waziri Nyoni, revealed the plans in Dar es Salaam during the Private Sector Partnership Malaria Workshop as part of the activities ahead of World Malaria Day.

He said the campaigns had already kicked off countrywide specifically in rural areas in a move geared to reduce the number of malaria deaths by advocating and providing education to the people on symptoms and proper treatment.

Nyoni pointed out that the campaigns have started generating positive impacts as most of people in remote areas were currently getting malaria treatment at the right time compared to previous years where some people died of malaria due delay in getting treatment.

United Against Malaria’s Coordinator Michael Ngatunga said in line with World Malaria Day theme: “Sustain Gains, Save Lives : Invest in Malaria” malaria can be prevented and treated through simple tools like mosquito nets, effective medicine and safe in door residual spraying.

Ngatunga said Tanzania has made a great strides in malaria control where by in October last year it completed universal coverage campaign that set out to cover every sleeping space with a long lasting insecticide treated net and investment in malaria control have created unprecedented momentum and yielded remarkable returns in the past few years.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
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