The Kwara government says it has started the training of healthcare workers on malaria treatment and the distribution of over 40 million malaria commodities across the 16 local government areas of the state.
Speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ilorin on the sidelines of the training, Alhaji Abdullahi Nageri, Programme Manager, State Malaria Elimination Programme, said the first phase of the training involved healthcare workers across the five public health facilities.
He said that the training also included six medical centres of tertiary institutions in Kwara.
He said that the training was geared toward improving the capacity of managers and other health professionals on malaria control programmes and understanding the key determinants of malaria epidemiology.
Nageri said that the Kwara government had earlier released N82 million for Malaria-Free Kwara Initiative (MFKI), adding “there is already free testing and treatment of malaria for pregnant women and children under the age five across the 16 LGAs.
He said that malaria had become endemic, especially in the rural areas of the state, which gave rise to the idea of the Malaria-free Kwara initiative.
According by him, some of the tertiary medical institutions for the first phase of the training included Kwara State University, College of Nursing and Midwifery, Kwara Polytechnic, University of Ilorin and College of Education (Technical), Lafiagi.
He said that the College of Health Technology, Offa was also among the tertiary medical institutions for the first phase of the training.
Nageri said that the training would also include 56 unsupported Public Primary Health facilities such as the General Hospital, Ilorin, General Hospital, Okuta and Cottage Hospital, ILesha Baruba among others.
Dr Oluwatosin Fakayode, the Director Public Health, Kwara Ministry of Health also to NAN that malaria remained a concern of public health in the state.
He pointed out that the highest cases of the disease were witnessed at the LGA levels, adding that six per cent of the outpatients were people down with the disease.
“One in every three people taking sick leave from work is as a result of malaria,” he said
Fakayode disclosed that the training would afford participants the knowledge of proper diagnosing, investigating and treatment of malaria.
According to him, it is now suicidal for people to die of malaria in the state as the state governor has ensured malaria testing and treatment is made free.
NAN reports that some of the anti malaria items distributed included surphurdoxine pyratamine for prevention of malarial in pregnancy, surgical glove, long lasting insecticidal nets and Artesunate injection for severe malaria.