The Executives Secretary, Yobe State Primary Healthcare Board, Dr. Babagana Kundi Machina has said despite the fact that Malaria is the most common preventable public health problem in Nigeria, about 97 percent of people in the country are still at the risk of its infections and complications.
He stated this while briefing newsmen in Damaturu, the Yobe State capital, on the commemoration of the 2022 edition of World Malaria Day.
Machina also noted that with children under the age of five and pregnant women at high risk, Malaria is the commonest cause of absenteeism from school, office, farms and markets, among others, resulting in lower productivity.
“In addition to the direct health impact, it exerts a huge social and economic burden on our communities and country. Billions of Naira are lost to malaria annually in form of treatment cost, prevention and loss of man hours”, Machina said.
The Executive Secretary maintained that Yobe State has made huge progress in the fight against malaria since 2013, resulting in a significant reduction in malaria burden across the State.
“In 2019, Yobe State Government and its partners distributed two million, two hundred thousand (2.2M) Long Lasting Insecticidal Nets (LLINs) through mass campaigns across the 17 LGAs of the State.
“Similarly, this year, Yobe State Government, National Malaria Elimination Programme, (NMEP) and other Malaria partners have concluded plans for Mass Insecticide Treated Nets replacement campaign scheduled from July – August 2022 in all the 17 LGAs”, he said.
According to him, the State, along with NMEP and partners, have also planned to conduct a third round of Seasonal Malaria Chemo-prevention (SMC) across 17 LGAs.
“All these preventive measures are to protect our people from the scourge of malaria in communities and also to reduce morbidity and mortality among children under five years and pregnant mothers,” he added.
He called on all critical stakeholders in the fight against the killer disease to double efforts and encourage the private sector to commit more resources to support the fight against malaria.
“The huge resources required to combat malaria in the country can only be effectively mobilized with the contributions of both the Government, Roll Back Malaria (RBM) partners, philanthropists and the private sector”, he stated.