By Eric M Kuju
There are three simple things every resident of Nasarawa State can do to end the scourge of malaria in Nasarawa State. These were as disclosed by the Nasarawa State Commissioner for Health, Pharmacist Ahmed Baba Yahaya during a special press conference organized as part of activities to mark World Malaria Day in Nasarawa State.
The press conference held on Friday April 22, 2022 in Lafia.
According to the Health Commissioner, if every individual in Nasarawa State does the following, the State will be able to end the scourge of malaria for good.
- Always sleep inside an insecticide treated net (ITN). This protects you and your loved ones from coming in contact with mosquitoes (the insect that transmits malaria).
- Never assume every fever is malaria. When you or your loved one has fever, go to a health facility to test to see whether or not it is malaria.
- If you are confirmed to have malaria and given medications, ensure you complete the dosage as prescribed. Do not stop taking the drugs when you start feeling better.
Pharmacist Ahmed Baba Yahaya also disclosed that the State Government on its own part along with its partners such as the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), has made efforts to make things easier for its citizens by the distribution of over two million insecticide treated nets (ITNs) free of charge to residents of Nasarawa State.
He also said that they have also ensured that every health care facility in the State can diagnose and treat malaria with the caveat that complicated cases be referred to secondary and tertiary health facilities.
The Nasarawa State Health Commissioner also revealed that because the effect of malaria is more terrible on pregnant women and children under age 5, preventive drugs (Sulphadoxin and Pyremethamine) have been made available and urged persons who fall under these categories to take advantage of the availability of these drugs in health facilities across the State.
He assured citizens of Nasarawa State that despite the successes recorded, the government will continue to work with partners to see that Nasarawa State gets to the Zero Malaria Target.
At the event, Pharmacist Ahmed Baba Yahaya also commissioned the Mama Put series, a production by the Breakthrough Action Nigeria which is aimed at positively changing the behaviour of residents of Nasarawa State as it concerns management of fever cases.
Presenting the series, the Nasarawa State Coordinator of Breakthrough Action Nigeria, Mr. Thomas Ohobu said the Mama Put series were produced in such a way that the message is simple, relatable and can be understood by most people.
Aside the press conference, other activities that are on the schedule to mark the world malaria day in Nasarawa State include media chats in various television and radio stations within the State.
The climax will be a road walk on Monday April 25, 2022 from Total Filling Station, Jos Road to Mana Primary Health Care behind the Emir’s Palace mosque in Lafia.