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02.06.2004 Regional News

Malaria Awareness Week launched at Axim

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Axim (W/R), June 2, GNA - The Nzema East District has the highest malaria prevalence rate of about 399 per cent in the Western Region, according to an evaluation carried out by the Ghana Health Service (GHS).

Mr Edwin Kumbatazie, Regional Health Education Officer, announced this at the launching of the Regional Malaria Awareness Week, at Axim on Tuesday.

He said the Wassa West District has a prevalence rate of 202 per cent and Shama-Ahanta East Metropolis, which has a rate of 200 per cent, is followed by the Bibiani-Ahwinaso-Bekwai district with 170 per cent. Mr Kumbatazie said a total of 321,523 cases of malaria were reported at outpatient departments of the various health facilities in the region last year.

He said 466 of the patients including 240 children under five years died of the disease.

Miss Anna Addo, Nzema East District Director of Health, said 4,337 people were admitted for malaria treatment at the Axim Government Hospital and Eikwe Catholic Hospital last year.

She said 89 of those admitted died of the disease adding that malaria could cause stillbirths, abortion, anaemia and convulsion. Miss Addo called on the people to observe personal and environmental hygiene to reduce the incidence of the disease in the area. Mr Kojo Armah, the District Chief Executive, said the district assembly has launched a sanitation programme to help reduce the incidence of malaria and other communicable diseases.

He said the assembly has purchased 10 refuse containers at a cost of 400 million cedis, wheel barrows and other sanitary equipment for distribution to area councils to enable them assist keep the environment clean.

Mr Armah said the assembly has also launched a project to assist landlords to construct household toilets.

He said the assembly would bear half the cost of the toilets and urged landlords to take advantage of the facility. 02 June, 04

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