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03.08.2009 Health

Tim Africa Aid Ghana combats malaria …in Ahafo Ano North District

By Frank Mensah & Sherry Gollo Kumasi - Ghanaian Chronicle
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TIM Africa Aid Ghana (TAAG) a non-governmental organisation (NGO), which is helping in the fight against malaria in the Ahafo Ano District of the Ashanti Region, has met with stakeholders to assess the impact of its public health education.

The main aim of the meeting was to assist TAAG, stakeholders, and other interested groups to engage in advocacy activities to gain support and awareness on malaria and its symptoms at the community level.

The meeting was in accordance with the Mobilise Against Malaria (MAM) calendar at a one day stakeholders' meeting on malaria at Tepa.

The Executive Director of TAAG, Mr. Isaac Kwabena Kakpeibe, said over three million people get malaria every year; 8,200 are infected with it daily, while five cases of the deadly disease are recorded every minute.

Presenting the malaria situation in Ghana, Mr. Agyemang Duah, Resource Personnel, said “malaria is increasing day and night, and the most reported cases in our hospitals represent about 44% of all reported cases.”

He mentioned that the Ahafo-Ano North District recorded 30.2% of malaria cases in 2007, which decreased to 18.2% in 2008.

According to him, the decrease meant that the district was making positive efforts to eradicate malaria, and urged the district to come together and fight the disease.

He said the MAM project, was being funded by the Ghana Social Marketing Foundation (GSMF) to facilitate the awareness creation of malaria and its symptoms, as well as the promotion of prompt and appropriate treatment of the disease.

Mr. Oliver Opoku, Deputy Co-ordination Director, was grateful to TAAG for the initiative to eradicate the menace.

He advised that the awareness creation should go along with the education and registration of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), to support the objective of prompt treatment.

In a related development, the MAM has organised a three-day workshop for twelve Community Based Surveillance Volunteers (CBSV) to give them first-hand information about the symptoms and treatment of malaria.

They were taken through topics like the overview of MAM project, community mobilisation strategies in support of the MAM project, mode of transmission of malaria, prevention and control.

The Tepa District Hospital Pharmacist, Mr. Asamoah Frimpong, asked the volunteers to work hard in their communities and educate their community members on the need to prevent malaria, which can be controlled if detected early.

Mr. Job Nyarko, Field Project Officer of MAM, thanked the participants for the good work done in their various communities, which had contributed to the reduction of malaria in the district, and urged them to keep it up.

The volunteers, on their part, complained about lack of transport to the remote areas of the district, and appealed to MAM to supply them with bicycles to enhance their work in the communities.

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