Malaria is ranked amongst the world most life-threatening diseases. It is caused by parasites through bite from an infected female Anopheles mosquito.
Annually, on April 25, the world come together in a joint initiative to ’kick out’ malaria which has remained a dreadful nightmare among many families.
This year’s theme was ‘Ready to beat Malaria’.
WHO global data
The World Health Organization (WHO) states that there are about 216 million of malaria related cases worldwide, with an approximate of 445,000 deaths associated to malaria illness across the world.
Additionally, 3.2 billion people stands at risk of contracting malaria worldwide according to WHO reports.
Africans suffering more
African regions have the highest shares of the global malaria at an estimate of 90 percent of the total cases reported by 2016 with 91 percent of malaria deaths being reported.
Nigeria leads with 27 percent of the total cases of malaria followed closely by Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as per the WHO findings.
At least 1 child dies after every two minutes resulting from the malaria disease. Pregnant women are the other group of people who are vulnerable to the disease.
By the end of 2016, a whooping amount $2.7 billion (Kshs. 270 billion) was injected into malaria control and prevention worldwide.
High mortality in Kenya
In Kenya alone, malaria results to more than 70 percent of the morbidity and mortality as per the –Kenya Malaria Indicator Survey 2015.
The study was conducted by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS).
The worst affected areas are around Lake Victoria region and those along the coast.
Malaria related cases have so far dropped by a margin of 12 percent since 2012 in Kenya.
The Ministry of Health through the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP) came up with policies and strategies including:
- Distribution of long lasting insecticidal nets
- Provision of intermittent preventative treatments for the pregnant women
- Enabling for prompt diagnosis and effective treatment of malaria cases.
NMCP also conducts prompt routine monitoring and periodic evaluation through surveillance and health information systems.
It also providing regular status update on malaria prevalence to ensure that the disease is constantly under control.
By George Ogallo