By Kayode Sanni-Arewa
A total of 2,692,209 free insecticide-treated nets (ITNs) will be distributed among households in 193 wards of Kwara State through a door-to-door approach in the 2023 Integrated Insecticide Treated Nets (ITNs) and Seasonal Malaria Chemotherapy (SMC) mass campaign to eliminate malaria in the state.
The Kwara state government in collaboration with the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) with funding support from the Global Fund Malaria Project joined in the process of the 2023 ITN/SMC malaria campaign.
Speaking at the orientation of media persons in the state on the malaria campaign in Ilorin on Tuesday, the head, media and communication manager, Society for Family Health Nigeria (SFH), Gbue Daniel, said that, “Similarly, a total of 2,283,800 sulfadoxin-pyrimethamine with amodiaquine (SPAQ) would be administered to eligible children aged three to 59 months as malaria prevention drugs.
The objective of the integrated SMC/ITN mass campaign is to ensure that for every person in Kwara state, there is one bed net to sleep inside, and every eligible child
receives a full course of SPAQ.
The distribution of ITN and SPAQ will be done on a door-to-door basis across all the 16 local government areas of the state.
“Simultaneous household registration and distribution of ITNs and SPAQ will commence
from October 19 to November 1, 2023. Households must ensure that they leave somebody at home within this period to collect nets.
Households who have eligible children between three months and 59 months old must ensure they receive SPAQ. SPAQ is given only to children who are not sick and are between three and 59 months of
“Caregivers must ensure their children complete the SPAQ dosage for Days 2 and 3.
“The newly collected ITNs MUST be aired under a SHADE for 24hrs before hanging and sleeping inside. Bring down the old nets and hang the new ones.
The mass campaign is led by the Kwara State Ministry of Health & Kwara state Primary Health Care Development Agency (KSPHCDA) with the technical support of the Society for Family Health, other partners and the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) providing coordination and oversight.
Also speaking, the director of Public Health, State Ministry of Health, Dr. Oluwatosin Fakayode, said that about 6,000 personnel would be deployed for the exercise, including ITN distributors, SPAQ dispensers, and recorders, among others.
The health expert, who lamented that Malaria has significant consequences, particularly for vulnerable populations like children under five years old and pregnant women, said that it is also a leading cause of illness and death in Nigeria.
Malaria is a leading cause of illness and death in Nigeria, contributing to high child mortality rates and reduced productivity. Untreated malaria can result in complications such as anaemia, organ failure, and even death.
In his presentation, a staff of the Federal ministry of Health, National Malaria Elimination Programme, Abuja, Bala Mohammed Masu, said that a significant method to prevent malaria is not to allow mosquito to bite us by sleeping inside a properly hung ITN every night, describing the prevention as one assured way (and most cost effective).