Roll Back Malaria: Group Seeks Sustained Funding

 Prof Onybuchi Chukwu, Health MinisterA non-governmental organisation, Family Care Association (FCA), has called for continued funding for the eradication of malaria in the country in order to achieve the objectives of the  Roll Back Malaria (RBM) initiative and the Nigerian Malaria Control and Prevention Programme (NMCPP).

The Programme Director of FCA,  Joshua Kempeneer,  made the call on Tuesday in Lagos during the inauguration of the Lagos leg of the activities to mark the 2013 edition of the World Malaria Day. Activities to mark the day included free screening for malaria, using fluorescence microscopy and rapid diagnostic tests (RTDs), free treatment of malaria cases using Artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT).

A seminar for community agents and health workers on the modern treatment and management of malaria, as well as free distribution of long lasting Insecticidal nets (LLIN) targeted at families, nursing mothers and children under the ages of 5 were also part of the events.

According to Kempeneer, “2013 is a critical year for malaria financing especially in Sub-saharan Africa. With sustained funding rapid progress towards ending malaria deaths can continue, but without it gains could be quickly reversed, putting millions of lives at risk. According to statistics history has shown that decreases in support for fighting malaria in areas where significant progress has been made lead to a resurgence of the disease, potentially undoing years of efforts and investment.”

He added that “The need to call for more funding for the National Malaria Control and Prevention Programme has become imperative and is in line with the Theme for WMD 2013 and the coming years: Invest in the future. Defeat malaria, and the Goal for 2013 energize commitment to fight malaria.” The Akwa Ibom State leg of the programme held in Abak, Etinan, Eket and Urue Offong/Oruko Local Government Areas of the state and, lasted for five days between 7th and 11th April. The yearly celebration of World Malaria Day offers a chance to shine a spotlight on the global effort to control malaria.

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