Commissioner for Health, Dr Muhammad Muhammad Makusidi

By Musa Mahmud 

Nigeria contributes about 27 percent of over 58 million, to the World malaria burden and 23 percent, numbering about 88,320 to malaria death globally.

Niger State Commissioner for Health, Dr Muhammad Makusidi, disclosed this in his address at this year’s World Malaria Day held at the Conference Hall of the ministry in Minna. 

He said that children under the age of five years remain the most vulnerable group affected by the disease.

He said report of the year 2018 indicated that the state had a malaria prevalence of 31.6 percent, according to microscopic results and a prevalence of 43 percent in terms of rapid diagnostic test.

The commissioner further explained that malaria causes 30 percent of fewer than 5 years mortality and 11 percent maternal mortality rate, according to the National Health Ministry Indices of the year 2015.

He stated that the goal of the National Strategic Plan on malaria, was to provide equitable, comprehensive, cost effective and high-quality malaria interventions through ensuring transparency, accountability, client satisfaction, community ownership and partnership.

He opined that with such strategic plan, malaria burden can be reduced to pre-elimination level and could as well bring malaria related mortality causes to zero.

Dr Makusidi stated that efforts of both government and partners’ interventions have led to the decrease in out patient’s attendance and hospital admission due to malaria.

He enumerated such interventions to include; distribution 3.6 million long lasting insecticide nets despite series of abused, to Nigerlites and the distribution of about 209.575 nets to pregnant women.

Others include free malaria testing to a total of 1.297,342 persons, out of which about 1.028,552 persons were found to have malaria and were treated with free ACTs drugs.

 He also pointed out that the ministry was beginning to see a reduction in the burden of the disease, suffering and death due to malaria fever.

He said that the state government in collaboration with partners had since embarked on the training of health workers on data capturing tool, DHIS 2 software, and supportive supervision, case management of uncomplicated malaria, data quality assurance and species identification as well as parasite counting.

While appealing to the citizens to join him to “Draw The Line Against Malaria” in the state, he urged all the people to “Stand Up and Take Action.”

He reiterated the state government commitment to provide essential anti malaria commodities for the total elimination of the parasite.