Malawi News Agency (Lilongwe)

2 June 2014

Malawi: Pharmacare Donates Dengue Fever Test Kits to Govt

Lilongwe — Pharmacare Pharmacies Friday donated to government 200 SD Bioline test kits used in detecting the presence of a mosquito virus that causes Dengue Fever in the human body.

At the symbolic presentation of the rapid detection test kits held at Ministry of Health Headquarters in Lilongwe, Chairperson for Pharmacare Board of Directors, Sandy Charumira, said the donation follows media reports of the disease's outbreak in the neighbouring countries of Tanzania and Mozambique.

"We are in the vicinity of Tanzania and Mozambique and it is this proximity that has prompted this donation for early tests and detection of the virus in case Malawians start to observe," Said Charumira who also reminded that Pharmacare has always been supportive to government and to hospitals through various programmes.

"Our support does not stop here, we are always ready to be there when the need arises," she added also disclosing that the donated test kits were dual testers, detecting both the actual virus and the antibodies that indicate the virus' presence in the blood.

Appreciating the donation, Chief of Health Services in the Ministry of Health Dr Charles Mwansambo said it was a great relief knowing that there was such a partner as Pharmacare who was always ready to help.

According to Dr Mwansambo, Dengue Fever is a severe, flu-like illness that affects infants, young children and adults and is characterized by a high fever which can be accompanied by symptoms like severe headache pain behind the eyes and muscle and joint pains.

"Though Malawi has not registered any cases of the disease yet, it is potentially at risk of being affected due to the proximity of the neighbouring countries affected by the outbreak and thus as a ministry, we have also put in place measures to either prevent or control," he said.

World Health Organisation (WHO) reports trace detection of the virus in the affected neigbouring countries to January this year.

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