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Five people die from malaria in Manicaland

by Staff Reporter
16 February 2013 | 4720 Views
A MALARIA epidemic has hit Manicaland, recording high prevalence rates, amid reports that five have been killed since the beginning of the year.

Manicaland Medical Director, Dr Tapiwa Murambi, said Mutasa District was the hardest hit.

Mutasa District cases have reportedly spilled into Mutare urban where 893 cases have been recorded from the beginning of the year by the city's health department.

"There is a serious outbreak in Mutasa and we have since seconded our teams to arrest the situation. To curb the spread, we have decentralised the treatment of malaria with village health workers now treating and testing for the disease.

This is meant to fight the disease in the early stages and do away with complications that normally arise with late treatments. Resources are little, but we hope we will receive more," he said.
Health promotions are being conducted as part of malaria awareness campaigns.

In Mutare urban, acting city's health director, Mr Simeon Mashababe, said a total of 893 cases have been reported since January.




He said the exponential increase had seen alarm bells ringing within the health sector resulting in a cocktail of remedial actions on the cards to curb the surge and reduce malaria related deaths.

As per the figures he produced, Mutare is among the hardest hit, with the city health clinics treating more than 30 malaria cases each day.

The surge present a 300 percent increase.

"The figures are alarming and collective action is needed to reduce the numbers. During the first week of January, we treated 104 cases and the figure rose to 893 cases during the first week of February. These figures are too high compared to the same period last year. In January last year, we only had 40 cases registered in the first week of the month and 108 cases were recorded in the first week of February. Mere calculation will show you that the percent rise is almost three fold," he said.

He said the local authority was working hand-in-glove with the provincial medical director's office to fight malaria.

"We urge people to destroy all mosquito breeding places by cutting down grass and filling all unnecessary water pools because mosquitoes breed in these areas. We are struggling to contain the disease because of the heavy rains which have resulted in most areas having water pools.

"The task at hand is big for us to handle alone and we need partners to arrest the situation. Grass cutting is going on and we shall continue dosing breeding places with chemicals to kill mosquitoes. Our guys are visiting homes on a weekly basis to ensure that breeding places are completely destroyed," he said.

Manicaland malaria

Source: MP

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