Commemorating World Malaria Day in Ghana

During this past World Malaria Day, celebrated on April 25th, the global community was tasked with responding to the COVID-19 pandemic brought on by the novel coronavirus while maintaining its commitment to fighting malaria. With support from the U.S President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), The PMI VectorLink Project continued to deploy life-saving interventions like indoor residual spraying (IRS) to help reduce the overall strain on health systems by keeping the most vulnerable people malaria-free.

In collaboration with Ghana Health Service, PMI VectorLink Ghana commemorated World Malaria Day by calling attention to the importance of reducing malaria across the country in a radio program hosted on April 28, 2020.

Panelists during the discussion included, Regional Malaria Focal Person Dr. Barikisu Seidu, former Director of Health Services, Abdul-Rahman, and Abukari Yakubu, the Environmental Compliance Officer for PMI VectorLink Ghana.

Dr. Barikisu Seidu made a call to action, describing a malaria-free Ghana as everyone’s responsibility, noting the importance of accepting malaria interventions like insecticide-treated bed nets (ITNs) and IRS. She indicated that in Ghana, out of every 100 outpatient healthcare visits, 22 are malaria cases, and out of 10 patients admitted, three are malaria cases with two of those three more likely to be children under 5.

As a result of PMI VectorLink’s IRS interventions, the Ghana Health Service has indicated that malaria incidences in IRS districts have reduced by half and are below the northern regional average. This data is further supported by a study* conducted by The World Health Organization (WHO)  during a review of health records in facilities across the country. As PMI VectorLink Ghana continues to achieve and go beyond its IRS targets, we are hopeful to further drive down malaria cases in IRS districts.

*Reference: WHO study published by Aregawi et al. Malar J (2017) 16:177 (A total of 210,709 hospital and laboratory records from 2005 to 2015 examined.)