AngloGold Ashanti Iduapriem (AAI) Gold Mine has extended its sensitisation initiative on malaria preventative measures to three additional communities and three Senior High Schools in its operational area to mark the World Malaria Day celebration.
The intervention forms part of the mining firm’s 2018 programme cycle. This was contained in a press released from the office of the company and copied to the Ghana News Agency at Tarkwa.
The theme for this year’s celebration was “Ready to beat malaria”.
The statement said Iduapriem mine was currently implementing a Malaria Control Programme in partnership with the Johns Hopkins Center of Communications, Ghana’s National Malaria Control Programme and the Tarkwa Nsuaem Municipal Directorate of Health.
Its focus is on the distribution of insecticide treated net to employees and members of the mine’s host communities.
The statement said the mining company had also invested in a collaborative community outreach programme with the John Hopkins Centre for Communications.
It said in 2017 the Municipal Health Directorate trained peer educators and 40 local volunteers to distribute 12,500 mosquito-treated nets and educational materials to surrounding communities.
The statement said the efforts had contributed to the Municipal Directorate’s Malaria Control Programme, which was aimed at reducing the prevalence of malaria incidence in the Municipality from 25.7 per cent recorded in 2014, to 15 percent by 2020.
“Iduapriem’ s anti-malaria effort was recognised in December at the Private Sector Malaria Programme (PSMP) Safe Awards, winning the Johns Hopkins Award in acknowledgement of the mine’s concerted efforts aimed at reducing malaria incidence among employees, dependents, and the surrounding communities” the statement added.
It pointed out that the award motivated the Company to do more in eradicating malaria from its host communities and Ghana at large.
The Gold Mine Company said it would continue to make strides in its malaria-combating programme to help the global efforts to achieve the 2020 milestones of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Global Technical Strategy for Malaria, which targeted 40 per cent reduction globally in malaria incidence and death rates.
In 2005, AngloGold Ashanti initiated an integrated malaria control programme within the Obuasi Municipality in the Ashanti Region of Ghana with an initial annual budget of US$1.7million.
Over a two-year period, the disease burden among mine workers reporting at the Edwin Cade Hospital reduced by over 70 per cent.
The average number of malaria cases recorded at the Hospital dropped from 6,800 to as low as 1,500 per month.
Based on this achievement and the fact that AngloGold Ashanti was the only institution implementing the Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) on a relatively large scale at the time, the Ministry of Health and the National Malaria Control Programme invited the Company to partner it to scale up the intervention in to 40 districts with the highest malaria cases.
AngloGold Ashanti was selected by the Country Coordinating Mechanism as the Principal Recipient (PR) of the Global Fund Round 8 Grant.
In 2017, AngloGold Ashanti received US$15.8 million to continue with IRS programme in the entire Upper West, three districts in Upper East region and Obuasi Municipality in the Ashanti region of Ghana after achieving remarkable success with the previous grant.