Medical &Health

Malaria cases decrease sharply

DHAKA- Bangladesh has made a significant progress for preventing malaria cases in the past three years and it has set a target of eliminating the mosquito-borne infectious diseases by 2030.

In 2014, the number of malaria cases in the country was 57,480 while the figure of the disease stood at 39,719 in 2015 and 27,737 in 2016, Dr MM Aktaruzzaman, program manager of National Malaria Control Program (NMCP), told a press conference here today

The NMCP and BRAC in cooperation with WHO organized the press conference on the occasion of World Malaria Day to be celebrated on April 25. This year's theme of the day has been fixed as "End Malaria For Ever".

Director General of Directorate General of Health Services(DGHS) Prof Dr Mohammad Abdul Kalam Azad, Director of Disease Control and Line Director of Communicable Diseases Control of DGHS Prof Dr Sanya Tahmina, physicians and representatives of local and international organizations, among others, addressed the press conference.

Prof Azad said, "We have achieved a significant progress for declining of prevalence rate of malaria cases in the country in the past couple of years as a result of sincere efforts and strong commitment of the government." "If this declining trend continues, we will be able to free the country from malaria by 2030," he added.

Other health experts said declining rate of malaria cases in Bangladesh has been lauded globally, but it has to increase efforts and supervision to prevent imported cases of the diseases to achieve the target of eliminating malaria.

Alongside mobilizing financial resources, steps must be redoubled to launch awareness campaign to win the fight against Malaria, they added.

Thirteen districts -- Rangamati, Khagrachari, Bandarban, Cox's Bazar, Chittagong, Sunamganj, Moulvibazar, Sylhet, Habiganj, Netrokona, Myminsingh, Sherpur and Kurigram - are most malaria endemic districts in the country, Dr Akhtaruzzaman said.

Among 13 districts, Rangamati, Khagrachari and Bandarban contribute 93 percent of total case burden of malaria disease, he added.

Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease affecting humans and other animals caused by parasitic protozoans belonging to the Plasmodium type. Malaria causes symptoms that typically include fever, feeling tired, vomiting, and headaches. In severe cases it can cause yellow skin, seizures, coma, or death Symptoms usually begin ten to fifteen days after being bitten.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)