Haematologist suggests how govts can reduce malaria infection
24 April 2017 Health
A Haematologist, Prof Osaro Erhabor, on Monday urged the three tiers of government to reduce the incidence of malaria infection by embarking on health education campaigns and training on malaria prevention.
Erhabor of the Department of Haematology and Blood Transfusion Science,Usman Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, said this during an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos ahead of the World Malaria Day (WMD).
NAN reports that a haematologist is an expert in the study of the blood and blood-forming tissues.
It also reports that the World Malaria Day, always celebrated every April 25, is to highlight the need for continued investment and sustained political commitment for malaria prevention and control.
This year’s global theme for World Malaria Day is “End Malaria for Good’’.
He said that governments at all levels could particularly educate people on the need to keep their surroundings clean to prevent them from serving as breeding places for mosquitoes.
“The provision and the distribution of more insecticide treated-nets freely to the populace and embarking on extensive vector control programme will also prevent malaria.
“The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates stated that there were about 214 million cases of malaria in 2015 which led to 438,000 deaths.
“Due to the incidence, WHO recommends testing before providing anti-malaria treatment because it limits indiscriminate use of anti-malaria drugs.
“It prevents emerging parasitic resistance to anti- malaria and ensures a declining malaria transmission in previously high transmission areas,” Erhabor said.
The hematologist said that those suspected to be suffering from malaria should go for Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDTs).
He defined RTDs as the first screening test for malaria diagnosis that must be confirmed by microscopy.
NAN reports that microscopy is the technical field of using microscopes to view objects and areas of objects that cannot be seen with the naked eye (objects that are not within the resolution range of the normal eye).
Erhabor said, “RDTs also assist medical doctors in the diagnosis of malaria, which can also help to detect evidence of malaria parasites in the human blood.
“It helps doctors to make rapid and accurate diagnosis which can be complemented by the use of microscopy”.
Erhabor said that pregnant women should be given free malaria diagnosis and treatment to reduce the burden on them and the developing fetus in their wombs.
“Every pregnant woman must be given malaria chemoprophylaxis at their first visit to the hospital for ante-natal clinics.
“Increment in creating more awareness of malaria infection and its complications among pregnant women and children is very important,” he said.
Erhabor advised all health workers, especially, nurses to always inform their patients during treatment or counselling what preventive precautions they would need to control the spread of malaria.