Tema, Students in the six senior high schools in the Tema Metropolis are being taken through malaria education and mosquito net demonstration as part of programme line-up for the commemoration of this year’s World Malaria Day.
The exercise, which is a maiden one is a partnership programme between Adolescent Health and the Malaria Control Programme in the Tema Metropolis.
The beneficiary schools are Chemu SHS, Tema Methodist Day SHS, Tema Presec SHS, Our Lady of Mercy (OLAMS), Tema Technical Institute, and Manhean Secondary Technical School.
Mrs Grace Eddy Amewu, Tema Metro Adolescent Health Focal Person in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said they were focusing on adolescents especially those in school as they were agents of change and could influence their peers and family on good practices.
Mrs Amewu further said it was also aimed at reducing the number of malaria infections among adolescents aged 10 to 19 years.
She disclosed that in the year 2020 a total of 4,146 uncomplicated malaria suspected cases were seen among adolescents in the various health establishments in the Tema Metropolis out of which 3733 were tested and 603 came out positive.
She added that the figure showed a sharp increase in what was recorded in 2019, which revealed that 3,611 were suspected out of which 2,987 were tested and 455 confirmed as malaria cases.
Giving a breakdown of the 603 positive malaria cases among adolescents in 2020, she said Tema Manhean had the highest of 274, followed by Tema South with 140 and Tema North’s 84.
Madam Elizabeth Appiah Bonnah, Tema Metro Malaria Focal Person, told the GNA that the primary objective of National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP) was to reduce morbidity and mortality from malaria infections.
Madam Bonnah added that malaria could lead to serious complications including severe anaemia leading to blood cells not being able to carry enough oxygen around, impaired consciousness (cerebral malaria), liver and jaundice as well as kidney failure when not diagnosed and treated early.
Malaria, she added kills a child every two minutes while it could also lead to low birth weight, premature birth, still births, miscarriages and anaemia when contracted in pregnancy.
She said some of the signs and symptoms of the disease comprised of fever, chills, fatigue, night sweats, abdominal pain, joint pain, diarrhea, nausea, headache and increased pulse.
She encourage the public to do their best to prevent the disease saying malaria prevention would lead to better school performance among children, save families some money, and also the nation would spend less on malaria treatment, while the health system would be able to commit resources from its management of the disease to others.
Madam Bonnah said to achieve all these; the World Health Organization launched the T3 of malaria in 2012, which she said were “Test, Treat, and Track”.
She explained that everyone who presented symptoms of malaria was expected to be tested, and every confirmed case should be treated with a quality-assured antimalarial medicine, and every disease should be tracked through timely and accurate surveillance system.
Source: Ghana News Agency