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Expert: Malaria Kills 97 Percent Of Children, Pregnant Women Annually

The World Health Organization says 97 percent of children under five years and pregnant women die annually of malaria.

Mrs Nkoyo Ogar of the Federal Ministry of Health revealed this during the distribution of Long Lasting Insecticide Nets (LLINs) Campaign organised by Catholic Relief Services in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

She described malaria as the most common preventable public health problem in Nigeria.

“WHO had researched that about ninety-seven percent of children under five years of age and pregnant women die annually of malaria in Nigeria. Malaria is the most common cause of absenteeism from school and offices, ” she stated.

According to her, the best opportunity for scaling up malaria prevention is the use of LLINs.

Mrs Adeyinka Olamide who represented the Ogun State Ministry of Health, said it is important that the people know what to do concerning LLINs before, during and after the campaign.

“Media do offer great services and provide direct opportunity to save lives and help people to live better. Media is best situated to support the essence of the campaign which is the sustenance of the net use culture.

”Malaria is a leading problem in public health but has low report in the media. Media is most positioned to help place pressure on public officials to always use LLINs,” she said.

She appealed to the media present to keep malaria issue on the front burner of health news. ”Media should continue to promote the use of LLINs after campaign as part oftheir corporate social responsibility. The media should follow the process through to get interesting and educative human angle story,” she added.

Mr. Elijah Egwu said the donors of materials to be used for the campaign have given the state one hundred percent net based on the 2006 population census of Ogun state.

The materials include 4000 A5 Samsung phones to monitor the activities of the participants, finger print scanner,staff badges with Quick Responses Code, highly secured hologram net cards, Tripp-lite charge stations, high capacity solar charger power banks, solar power banks.

He revealed that about 3.1 million LLINs would be given out to households all over the state.


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