Audu Bala Mohammed, the National Coordinator, National Malaria Eradication Programme, NMEP, has revealed that Nigeria spends an estimate of N300 billion yearly on malaria prevention and treatment.
Mohammed, who spoke at the first quarter media parley organized by the NMEP, noted “the financial loss due to malaria is estimated to be about 300 billion naira annually in form of treatment costs, prevention costs of man-hours”.
He said malaria has remained a major public health concern in Africa, despite preventable and curable possibilities.
Mohammed also said the disease is responsible for eleven per cent of maternal deaths and thirty per cent of child deaths in the country.
“Malaria contributed to 60 per cent of out-patient visits to health facilities, 15 per cent of low birth weight, maternal anaemia, still births, miscarriage and other pregnancy-related complications.
“The disease is one of the reasons for poor school attendance in many settings because it accounts for 13 to 15 percent of medical reasons for absenteeism from school,” he further noted.
He added that “In 2017, the body and her partners distributed a total number of 24,519,371 Insecticidal Nets in seven states to prevent mosquito bites” and about “130 million of ACTs were dispensed in 2016 and 25.4 million in October 2017 to treat malaria positive cases”.
He however advised that Artemisinin-based Cobination Therapy, ACTs, remains the recommended medicine for malaria treatment by the World Health Organization, as against monotherapy treatment.