The Federal Ministry of Health through the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP), is to distribute 2.995 million treated mosquito nets in Osun to reduce malaria scourge.
Dr. Gbenga Adepoju, the Director of Public Health, Osun Ministry of Health made this disclosure on Monday in Osogbo during an orientation programme organized for journalists to help spread awareness.
According to Adepoju, the programme was championed by the Federal Government, the Global Fund, Society for Family Health and Catholic Relief Services.
He said that the plan is to distribute the nets to every household in the state at the ratio of one mosquito net to two persons.Malaria is endemic and Osun is lucky to be selected as one of the six beneficiaries of the Long Lasting Insecticide Nets (LLINs), re-distribution programme of Global Fund and the Federal Government.The redistribution programme is to resume in early September, having begun in 2013 with 1.6 million nets distributed to residents of the state. It is being redistributed this year because the nets previously distributed have a life span of three years.
More than 14 thousand personnel have been employed and trained for the distribution exercise; this will really go a long way in fighting the scourge”,he said.
The NMEP representative, Mr. Sam Abutu, said at the programme that the malaria treated nets campaign was to partner with the state in its re-distribution exercise to reduce the malaria scourge in the country.
Abutu said that newsmen were employed to help in public enlightenment, as the public needs to have information on the importance of the LLINs.
In her own remarks, Mrs. Romoke Adeyanju, the Osun Malaria Coordinator/Programme Manager, Osun Ministry of Health, called on media practitioners to join them in the war against malaria.
She said that people should be encouraged to use the nets after receiving them.“The people, who will be collecting the nets should understand that they are to be sleeping under it to prevent mosquito bites.They are not to keep them in the house or turn the nets to window, door cover or to fishing nets.
It is important that residents of the state attain maximal utilization of the nets,’’ she stressed.
Adeyanju said that when the programme came up in 2013, 90.2 per cent distribution was recorded while 65.4 per cent utilization was attained.
The programme manager said that the utilization, however, dropped to 47.5 per cent in 2014 and later declined to 15.7 per cent in 2015.
She said that the programme envisaged a record of 100 per cent ownership (collection) and at least 80 per cent utilization in 2017 distribution exercise.