Global Experts Meeting on Infectious Diseases
Federal University Dutse,Nigeria
Title: The bitter truth about malaria control in Nigeria
Biography: Ruqayyah Hamidu Muhammad
Malaria is a devastating disease affecting Nigerians, with a quarter of all malaria cases and deaths in the world occurring in Nigeria. It is a disease affecting every sector of the Nigerian economy from Agriculture, Industries, Education to Tourism. Due to the enormous economic drain of malaria, governments in Africa and especially Nigeria in line with resolutions made at the Abuja summit 2000 vowed to end the menace of malaria by 2020. Now eighteen years later malaria is still a major cause of morbidity and mortality in Nigeria. Strategy of vector control involving the use of Long-lasting Insecticidal Nets (LLIN), Indoor Residual Spray (IRS) and larviciding of breeding sites would have worked perfectly in Nigerian set up. However this has been marred by many issues, where the LLIN were given freely to almost every household only a few are used appropriately. IRS and larviciding has been left in the hands of the people who use several unauthorized chemical concoctions, creating vector resistance and harm to the environment. The second strategy of prompt diagnosis and treatment of all fevers, which is costly, paved way to introduction of low sensitive Rapid Diagnosis Tests (RDTs) kits and adulterated drugs causing misdiagnosis, mistreatment and encouraged self-medication. In conclusion since no vaccine is 100% successful yet, the need to exploit our locally available plants with insecticidal properties cannot be over emphasized as in my opinion vector control is the key to malaria control, while curtailing the challenges of resistance, affordability, safety as well as acceptability.