Written by Williams ABAH

Malaria, 90% of life-saving interventions still on track-WHO

The World Health Organization, WHO, had warned that malaria deaths



could double due to severe disruptions to essential malaria programmes
as the world battle the COVID-19 pandemic. it was gathered that
despite challenges posed by the Covid-19
pandemic, over 90 percent of life-saving malaria intervention
campaigns scheduled for this year are still on track. The RBM
Partnership to End Malaria made this disclosure at a media briefing in

It said the campaigns are still ongoing across Africa, Asia and the
Americas to avoid severe increase in malaria cases and deaths. It
noted that countries on the verge of reaching zero malaria cases are
also maintaining their focus on eliminating this preventable and
treatable disease.

It was learnt that RBM Partnership to End Malaria is the largest
global platform for coordinated action against malaria.
The World Health Organization, WHO, had in April warned that malaria
deaths could double due to severe disruptions to essential malaria
programmes as the world battle the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to them, to prevent this, there was need for affected
countries to collaborate with global malaria stakeholders, mobilised
to safely deliver life-saving malaria interventions. It was learnt
that the 2018 report,has 228 million malaria cases and 360,000 related
deaths in the African region, accounting for over 90 per cent of
global cases.

The RBM partnership appealed to global leaders to prioritise the
health of pregnant women and their unborn children to prevent
consequences caused by malaria in pregnancy.

It said the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted access to antenatal care,
malaria diagnosis and treatment and other routine health services.
This, the organisation said, has made pregnant women and children
remain vulnerable to the disease which has claimed many lives

“Good health starts with proper care of pregnant women and children.
Protecting pregnant women, their unborn babies and newborns from
malaria will improve the health of mothers and their young children in
those critical first years of life and can contribute towards the
achievement of Africa’s broad health and development goals.”

The first Lady of Ghana, Rebecca Akuffo-Addo said
An estimated 11 million pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa were
infected with malaria in 2018 resulting in nearly 900,000 children
born with a low birthweight, a leading cause of child mortality.WHO
noted that more than two-thirds of eligible women across 36 countries
in sub-Saharan Africa did not receive the full course of life-saving
preventive treatment against malaria during pregnancy in 2018.

It has however, launched its ‘Speed Up Scale Up’ to increase coverage
of intermittent preventive treatment in pregnancy
with at least three doses of a quality-assured
antimalarial-pyrimethamine to all eligible women in sub-Saharan Africa
by 2025.

The deputy director of reproductive health,directorate-general of
Health and Public Hygiene, Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene,
Mali, Aminata Traore, called for the expansion of IPTP therapy in
other countries.

She noted that IPT for pregnancy is simple and cost-effective; saves
newborn lives and prevents adverse outcomes on child development.

“IPTp-SP needs to be expanded substantially in all countries where it
is  recommended intervention”
She urged health officials to sustain efforts to prevent, detect, and
treat malaria among pregnant women and other populations at risk.





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