Ghana records 3.5 million cases of malaria annually

MalariaGhana records 3.5 million cases of malaria every year, Mr Samuel Addo,  Sunyani Municipal Disease Control Officer has  disclosed.

Speaking at a day’s training on behavioural change communication and microscope for malaria diagnosis, Mr Addo said 900,000 of the malaria cases are recorded among children less than five years.

The training organised by the Hope for Future Generations (HFFG), a health centred non-governmental organisation with support from the UK Aid and attended by 70 licensed chemical sellers and healthcare providers in the Municipality.

Mr. Addo advised chemical sellers and healthcare providers to ensure that perceived malaria cases are tested and proved positive before they are treated.

He said if uncomplicated malaria is not treated promptly and correctly it progresses into  severe form, which easily kills especially children.

Mr Addo noted that patients with uncomplicated malaria have fever, headache, chills, profuse sweating as well as bone pains and often very weak. They may also have nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, cough particularly in children and  loss of appetite.

Malaria is a communicable disease, he said advising households to observe proper personal hygiene and good environmental sanitation to avoid the spread of the disease.

Mr Addo said malaria symptoms usually appear between nine to 14 days after the bite of infective female anopheles mosquitoes.

Mrs Rose Balaaboore, Project Coordinator of the HFFG,  an organisation working to improve on the socio-economic status of women and children explained that the training was in line with a six-month project the NGO is implementing in 100 communities in 10 districts and municipalities in the region.

Beneficiary communities are Sunyani, Wenchi and Techiman municipalities, Sunyani West, Dormaa East, Jaman North, Jaman South, Asutifi North, Tain and Banda districts.

Mrs Balaaboore explained that malaria treatment based on diagnostic testing is good clinical practice and has many advantages over presumptive treatment of all fever episodes.

Presumptive treatment of malaria, she indicated has adverse effects on patients as administration of malaria drugs without diagnostic test leads to drug resistance.

Source: GNA

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