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Matebeleland South records decrease in malaria cases

by Staff reporter
17 Nov 2021 at 05:35hrs | Views
THE implementation of malaria elimination activities in Matebeleland South is now paying dividends as the province has this year recorded a decrease in malaria cases with four deaths from about 800 patients.

Responding to questions on the state of malaria infections in the province, Matebeleland South provincial epidemiology and disease control officer Dr Andrew Muza said the process of preparing for the malaria season had started.

"We're currently in the process of training health care workers on emergency preparedness and response focusing on malaria. We usually do assessments and propositioning of commodities that are needed to respond to malaria outbreaks. These include malaria medicines, test kits and other chemicals that may be needed to control the mosquito vector," said Dr Muza.

He said the province was working on malaria elimination since there is generally low incidence of malaria.
"We've made some progress in this regard as shown by the persistent decrease in malaria incidence over the last five years.

Currently, we have an incidence of about 1/1000 population per year. During 2021, we lost four patients due to malaria from about 800 patients. We need to remain vigilant and ensure that we maintain the gains that we have been enjoying from the implementation of malaria elimination activities," said Dr Muza.

He said the main thrust will be on trying to prevent the reintroduction of malaria transmission in areas that had no malaria cases for as long as three years.

Statistics showed that in May 2020, Matebeleland South province recorded 2 823 cases of malaria and 11 deaths, with Beitbridge accounting for 89 percent of the cases.

This was against the 2019 figures of 583 cases and nine deaths, down from 1 966 cases and 10 deaths in 2018.

Indications were that of the recorded cases in 2020, 2 511 were from Beitbridge District, 249 from Gwanda and 17 from Insiza while Matobo recorded 28, Umzingwane District 11 and Mangwe had seven cases.

Source - The Chronicle