The Monitor :: Surge in malaria cases from zambia
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Last Updated
Friday 15 December 2017, 17:56 pm.
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Surge in malaria cases from zambia

MAUN: Botswana is witnessing a surge in the number of imported cases of malaria from Zambia, health authorities in Ngamiland have said.
By Boniface Keakabetse Mon 10 Oct 2016, 18:02 pm (GMT +2)
The Monitor :: Surge in malaria cases from zambia








Giving an overview of malaria in Ngamiland, head of preventative, Goitseone Mothibi explained that they have recorded 28 cases of malaria from Zambian nationals who visit Botswana for fishing activities from Kasumbelesa, a lucrative market for fish in Zambia. He explained that the patients fell sick during their trip to buy fish from Lake Ngami.

However, it was explained that the malaria strain from the Zambian patients is similar to the one found in Botswana and the treatment is the same. Zambia is one of countries with higher transmission of malaria according to WHO, which has set a target of 2030 for the country to have eradicated the deadly disease. 

Mothibi explained that this year they dealt with a total number of 90 cases of malaria including the imports, out of which one person died while eight were admitted and discharged. He underscored the country’s committment to eradicate malaria by 2018.

Mothibi said in pursuance of this goal they are treating any case as an outbreak. “Whenever we record a case of malaria we immediately declare an outbreak,” he said.

He stated that they are making progress to malaria eradication. Mothibi said that in 2014 they recorded 88 cases and three deaths and in 2015, 25 cases, no death while in 2016 there were 90 cases and one death.

Mothibi said they service

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an entire population of 98,871 from 18 villages. However, he complained about low percentage of people who utilise the indoor residual spraying coverage. He said in 2015 the coverage was 78%. However he felt that this was an improvement from the previous years of 2013: 61% and 2014: 48%.

He explained that in 2015, 785 houses could not be sprayed as they were locked when spraying teams arrived. Another 743 could also not be sprayed as the team found nobody at home while 319 people blatantly refused to have their houses sprayed. Mothibi explained that a total of 8,564 houses were sprayed in total.

Indoor residual spraying coordinator, Kebotlwaetse Kwambala explained that the Maun health team is ready for the ongoing malaria season, which started from October to June. He said some of the activities they are undertaking as preparation include recruitment and training of indoor residual spraying staff, distribution and hang up of long lasting insecticide treated nets, community mobilisation activities, resource mobilisation, larviciding, entomological surveillance and malaria case management

Kwambala said they would start spraying at the hot spot areas, which include Shorobe, Makalamabedi and Sehithwa catchments.

A concern was also raised during the conference about the abuse of the insect treated nets by some unscrupulous fishermen who buy them to turn them in to fishing nets.

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