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14.10.2005 Health

Support shift on malaria - B/A Regional Medical Director

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Sunyani (B/A) Oct. 14, GNA - Dr. George Osei Bonsu, Acting Brong-Ahafo Regional Director of Ghana Health Service has tasked district directors to support the nation's shift from the use of chloroquine to the combination of Artesunate plus Amodioquine, to treat malaria.

He asked them to organize educational workshops for service providers on the new policy guideline to become abreast with the modalities of the change.

Addressing the close of a three-day training of trainers workshop for 40 participants in Sunyani, Dr. Bonsu gave the promise that the Regional Directorate would support such training of district directors.

The theme for the workshop was "New anti-malaria drug and case management policy guidelines"

It was jointly organised by the Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service and the National Malaria Control Programme and participants included medical doctors, pharmacists, nurses and health assistants from both public and private health delivery institutions.

Dr. Bonsu, who is the regional senior medical officer in-charge of Public Health, announced that officials would be carrying out intermittent monitoring and evaluation of the Policy.

He therefore, advised the participants to make sure of proper documentation of whatever transpired at their work places regarding the new drug and case management policy guidelines. The acting regional director noted that malaria and anaemia had topped the Service's annual statistics' list of all the 10 regions in the country as the most cause of deaths, especially among children under-five years and pregnant women.

"Research has proved that the administration of Chroloquine as cure for malaria has outlived its usefulness or no more effective, hence the nation's decision now to resort to the use of Artesunate plus Amodiaquine, as the best substitute.

"Let we all embrace the change so that at least the rate of deaths could be minimized", Dr. Bonsu added. He said in accordance with the change the regional directorate had dispatched a vehicle to Tema to bring the new anti-malaria drugs and all being well by next week the new drugs would be available for use at hospitals and health centers in the region.

Topics treated at the workshop included "Intermittent Preventive Treatment (IPT) of Malaria in Pregnancy", "Relationship between the various health care levels and their capabilities for the management of malaria", "National anti-malaria drug policy", "Definition and Epidemiology of malaria", "Life cycle of anopheline mosquitoes", and "Assessment and management of uncomplicated malaria".

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