The Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGH) has marked the 2017 World Malaria Day on the theme “End Malaria for Good” with a focus on a Push for Prevention.
The World Malaria Day, marked on April 25 annually, is an occasion to highlight the need for continued investment and sustained political commitment for malaria prevention and control.
A statement signed by Thomas Boateng Appiagyei, President of the PSGH, noted that Malaria, when severe, was life-threatening and that creating a barrier between the insect vector and humans was an effective preventive intervention against malaria infection.
It said according to the World Health Organization (WHO), sub Saharan Africa including Ghana, carried a disproportionately high share of the global burden of the disease, which accounted for almost 90 per cent of all malaria cases and 92 per cent of malaria deaths.
“The most vulnerable population at risk for malaria infection, complications and deaths include; pregnant women, children under five years and sick people with immune health status like HIV/AIDs.
“Others include; Ghanaians living in malaria free countries who wish to visit families and friends in Ghana and other countries in sub-Saharan Africa and non-immune foreign visitors migrating to malaria endemic zones,” it said.
Mr Appiagyei however explained that like most infectious diseases, malaria was completely preventable and also curable with the use of proven effective medicines and other preventive interventional tools and strategies.
“In recent times, increased efforts had been made globally and by governments of malaria endemic countries including Ghana, and this had and was still producing impressive outcomes and dramatically reducing the malaria burden,” he said.
According to the statement, the Pharmaceutical Sector in Ghana, led by members of the Pharmaceutical Society had continued to support national and global initiatives for the effective prevention, control and possible eradication of malaria.
It said Pharmacists were actively supporting the national policy initiative of “Test, Treat and Track”, as well as “Detect, Treat and Prevent” which had been shown to minimise unnecessary exposure and overuse of antimalarial drugs.
The PSGH also called on the government to end the menace of ‘Galamsey’- illegal mining, in the country, adding that unregulated mining led to uncovered pits which held stagnant water leading to the breeding of mosquitoes.
This, the Society said, could lead to the incidence of malaria with the advent of the rainy season, hence the urgent need to stop the illegal mining practice with immediate effect.