The Oyo State Government, in collaboration with Malaria Consortium, has launched the second phase of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention Campaign (SMC), with the goal of achieving zero malaria prevalence in children under the age of five in the state.
The program was inaugurated in Saki West Local Government Area of the State, targeting the prevention of malaria in children, aged 3- 59 months during the peak of malaria season.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Olusoji Adeyanju, reiterated the Governor Seyi Makinde led-administration’s commitment to significantly reduce malaria cases among children under five and pregnant women.
The Permanent Secretary explained that it was essential for parents and guardians to present their children to health workers for drug administration.
He maintained that the children within the age bracket are expected to take chemoprevention drugs monthly for five months.
According to him, the State Government will continue strengthening routine healthcare services to improve the health of women and children, through the different Healthcare initiatives.
He said, “this initiative is in line with the global Malaria strategy which sets the target of reducing global malaria incidence and mortality rates by at least 90% by year 2030.”
“The second round of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention distribution will commence on Friday June 16th, 2023 and last till Monday 19th June, 2023. Distribution will be carried out monthly for four days each month.
The drugs will be repeated every 28 days from June to October 2023.”
“The present drugs SPAQ that will be distributed are free and they do not cure malaria but they prevent Malaria. It doesn’t work alone; we have to ensure that our children also sleep inside the net. Our environment should be clean without mosquito birding sites”
He appreciated the health care providers, implementing the process and Malaria Consultum Team for their support.
Earlier, he said the State Government has received significant support from the Malaria Consortium, who implements SMC.
He said the mass distribution of malaria preventive drugs in the state, has significantly reduced malaria cases in children between 3 to 59 months in Oyo state to 52 percent from 72%.
“The drugs have been provided in collaboration with Malaria Consultum, our Implementing Partners. They are also supporting flag-off across the other five LGAs presently.
“The implementation commenced last year with an overall coverage of 102% in which about 290,000 children were reached. Our data show that the incidence of Malaria in our children aged 3-59 month dropped from 72% to 52%”, he said.
He however sought for the support of stakeholders in concerned communities to ensure successes in the implementation.
Earlier, the wife of the Chairman, Saki West local government, Mrs. Funmi Akinola, expressed the readiness of the local government to continually give the project necessary support.
The Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention will be administered in six local governments with the highest malaria burden, which includes; Irepo, Olorunsogo and Ogbomoso North.
Others are Saki East, Saki West and Surulere local government areas of Oyo State.