In commemoration of World Malaria Day, the Oyo State government through the Ministry of Health, has on Tuesday distributed free malaria treatment commodities to 30 private health facilities.
Oyo State Commissioner for Health, Dr Bode Ladipo, while delivering his speech at the State’s Emergency Operation Centre, Yemetu, Ibadan on the Theme –“Time To Deliver Zero Malaria; Invest, Innovate, Implement”, explained that about 60 percent of antenatal clients received services at private health facilities, hence, the need for continuous collaboration with the sector to further reduce malaria burden in the state.
The Commissioner for Health, who spoke through the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Olusoji Adeyanju; said that the focus of the government was to cover the most vulnerable people in terms of malaria testing and treatment, particularly, pregnant women and children in the areas with the highest malaria burden.
Dr Ladipo, who harped on innovations in the delivery of malaria services, revealed that Oyo State had recorded a reduction in malaria cases from 75 percent to 52 percent among the children after several interventions.
He added that the aim of the government is to accelerate progress towards ending malaria deaths and cases by focusing on high-impact strategies to prevent, detect and treat malaria.
Dr Ladipo, called on pregnant women to register for antenatal care at an early stage of pregnancy to enjoy comprehensive health care.
“The government of Oyo State has intensified effort to deliver Zero Malaria by investing on innovative ways to implement strategies to eliminate malaria.
“The state has made great strides in the management, control, and elimination of malaria as seen in the 2021 Malaria Indicator Survey report that showed a Malaria Prevalence in Nigeria of 46 percent, while it was 21 percent in Oyo State.
“Furthermore, due to different interventions carried out across the state after the COVID -19 outbreak in Nigeria, a reduction in the percentage of uncomplicated malaria cases from 74 percent in 2020; 57 percent in year 2022 and a reduction in fever cases tested positive with RTD for malaria from 75 percent to 55 percent was observed.
“Let me remind the public that malaria season is around the corner and prevention is better than cure.
“Let’s ensure a clean environment void of mosquito breeding sites, promote healthy practices, pregnant women should access care at the facility by early registration, visit the nearest and certified facility to conduct malaria test for diagnosis and treatment if there is fever, this will be free in public facilities.
“I also urge our mothers to get their children vaccinated, while everyone should adopt all forms of malaria preventive measures be it primary, secondary, or tertiary for the state to free from malaria burden”, Ladipo stated.
In their separate remarks, the representatives of Breakthrough Action Nigeria, US President Malaria Initiative for State PMIs, GHSC- PSM, WHO, Malaria Consortium MC, Save the Children, Solina Limited, lauded the Oyo State government for creating the enabling environment for the actualisation of partnership arrangements, assuring the government of continuous support towards achieving zero malaria in Oyo State.