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A Survey of the Incidence of Malaria among Vulnerable People of Luano District, Central Zambia

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A Survey of the Incidence of Malaria among Vulnerable People of Luano District, Central Zambia
Case Study Session
Dr. Chileshe Benard, RCE Lusaka
9th African Regional RCE Meeting
5-7 August, 2019, Luyengo, Eswatini

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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A Survey of the Incidence of Malaria among Vulnerable People of Luano District, Central Zambia

  1. 1. 2019/08/12 1 A Survey of the Incidence of Malaria among Vulnerable People of Luano District, central Zambia A Presentation made at the 9th African RCE Regional Meeting on ‘Accelerating Progress towards the Achievement of Sustainable Development Goals in Africa’ Date: 5th - 7th August, 2019 at University of Eswatini, Luyengo Campus, Eswatini RCE Lusaka Bernard Chileshe Mirriam Sampa Moonga • RCE Name and Country: RCE Lusaka, Zambia • RCE Challenge: Ill-health among vulnerable rural communities in Zambia. • RCE Educational Strategy and Response: Sensitization Workshops. • Link to SDGs and Targets: • Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages. • Targets 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3: By 2030, reduce global maternal mortality ratio, end preventable deaths of infants and under-5 children, end among other diseases, malaria, respectively. Background • Malaria is a parasitic disease that is transmitted between humans through the bite of the female Anopheles mosquito. • In Zambia, the malria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is by far the most deadly and common. • Malaria is a major public health challenge in Zambia and remains endemic across all ten provinces in the country. • In 2014, 5.8 million cases of malaria were reported through the National Health Management Information System (HMIS) and 4,000 deaths resulting. • Morbidity and mortality are highest among pregnant women (lowered immunity), under 5 children (have not yet developed strong immune systems) and rural populations = the most vulnerable groups. Repercussions of ill-health a) A disease-laden population is not a productive population b) Lost years of healthy life. c) Undermine socio-economic lives and destabilize societies d) At home, economic burden related to direct medical costs. Diverting finances to procuring treatment. Can lead to dissaving, borrowing and selling assets, and falling into poverty. e) Productive time is wasted on taking care of the sick. f) At the work place, colleagues have to increase their workload to cover up work of the ill colleague. Can lead to lose of employment. g) Ultimately, death. May result in orphans and widows/widowers and attendant problems. • Scholars recommend that more research and surveillance is needed to improve the understanding of the overall epidemiology of malaria in Zambia. The Study Area: Luano District in Central Zambia • Luano is a new district in the Central Province of Zambia (used to be part of Mkushi District, until October 2012) • 2019 population estimate: 36,082, rising rapidly from 13, 853 in 2000. • 12,929 (50.6%) are male and 12,619 (49.4%) are female. • Area: 9,211 km² – Density: 3.917/km² [2019], vast but sparsely settled. • The area is a hard- to-reach escarpment zone. • Prone to both droughts and floods. • Lagging behind in socio-economic development. . The location of Luano District in Zambia
  2. 2. 2019/08/12 2 Objectives the study a) To map the incidence of malaria in six villages in the region. b) To establish the major challenges to malaria control in the area. c) To hold malaria-prevention sensitization workshops in the area. The UniversityTeachingHospital,Lusaka Challenges identified 1. Settlements further away from the district admin centre had higher incidence of malaria. 2. Age groups 5-15 years were more affected by malaria (they did not receive insecticide treated mosquito nets). 3. Pregnant women and chikdren were more favoured to get insecticide treated mosquito nets. 4. Men rarely presented themselves for treatment; therefore women appeared to suffer more from malaria. 5. Unkempt surroundings (tall grass, maize fields, puddles of water) contributed to prevalence of malaria. Challenges cont… 6. People spent time outside the house in the evening exposing themselves to mosquitoes. 7. Hastily constructed dwellings let in mosquitoes. 8. Mosquitoes used as fishing nets. 9. Some people did not like using mosquito nets even if they had them. 10. Knowledge of malaria symptoms was very high. 11. Knowledge-Action Gap (KAP) Impacts of Malaria in Luano Area • Impacts of having malaria included: • Children staying away from school; • Women who are home-minders, failing to run homes; • Men failing to till farmland; • Household money spent on procuring drugs. Lessons learnt • This study provided an insight into the challenges facing rural communities concerning the disease burden and how lack of amenities such as clinics and insecticide-treated mosquito nets impacts on them. • The study indicated the need to for two things: (a) Providing education and sensitization to rural communities (e.g. on residual spraying and use of insecticide treated nets). • This can help to them to respond appropriately to malaria prevention, and, therefore, minimize loss of lives and their disruptive consequences. (a) Lifting rural people out of poverty(some people did not use nets because they could not afford them). Or used nets that they were given for fishing because they could not afford fishing nets. ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT Preventing malaria • People in the area can take malaria tablets to avoid catching the disease. • They can avoid getting bitten by mosquitoes. Bed nets, insect repellent spraying and long-sleeved • Slash tall grass around the houses. • Bury sites where stagnant water collects. clothing are required for this purpose
  3. 3. 2019/08/12 3 Conclusion • There can be no accelerated development towards meeting SDG 3 in Zambia if rural areas like Luano still lag behind in accessing health care. • Robust programmes needed in the distribution of insecticide treated nets and spraying for mosquitoes should continue. • This to go side by side with community sensitization. • Government constructing 650 health posts, most of them in rural areas. Long-lasting insecticide-treatednets (LLINs) Indoor residual spraying (IRS) Relationship to other RCE Activities • This study essentially links well with other projects that RCE Lusaka has undertaken in the recent past: 1. Promotion of fish aquaculture to ensure sustainability in fish production in the country and among vulnerable communities; 2. Promotion of growing potted vegetables in sacks for improved student diet at the University of Zambia (and other communities where people live in confined space); 3. Rainwater harvesting at the University of Zambia Thank you for listening! Merci de votre attention! Obrigado por escutar! Siyabonga! Salani kahle!!

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