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Expert condemns oral monotherapy treatment for malaria


Malaria treatment

A medical expert has lamented the dangers involved in using oral monotherapy in the treatment of malaria, encouraging Nigerians to adhere to the use of Artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACTs).

The National Coordinator, National Malaria Eradication Programme (NMEP), Dr. Audu Bala Mohammed, said this in Abuja at the weekend, noting that malaria is preventable, treatable and curable though it remains a major public health problem in Africa and Nigeria.

Mohammed said malaria has been a major barrier across Africa, and has truncated economic development across the continent.

Recalling that in 2001, malaria was responsible for the death of approximately 482,000 under-five children, even though an estimated 136 million insecticide Treated Nets (ITNs) were distributed to endemic countries the same year, Mohammed insisted that the sickness is still a major public health concern particularly in sub-Sahara Africa.

He said malaria was the principal reason for poor school attendance in many settings, as it accounts for 13 to 15 per cent of medical reasons for absenteeism in school.

The coordinator also disclosed that the nation’s financial loss, due to malaria was estimated to be about N300bn yearly in the form of treatment cost, prevention cost and loss of man-hours.

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