--Say Liberia Malaria Control Program Director
The Program Directorat the National Malaria Control Program (NMCP) of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (MOH), Mr. Oliver Pratt says this year's World Malaria Day here is focusing on 6000 households in about 30 communities in Montserrado and Margibi Counties with massive awareness on the prevention of malaria and COVID-19 in the country.
The celebration, which began over the weekend invarious communities across the two counties is expected to be climaxed on April 29, 2020.
Mr. Pratt explained that the NMCP is unable to proceed with its traditional celebrations this year due to the current COVID 19 pandemic, thus compelling it to come up with other forms of activities to mark the celebration of the day.The NMCP boss the nearly a week awareness and sensitization within the targeted communities is another way of celebrating this year's event.
When asked why the two counties were selected for such a major awareness undertaking when the entire country is at risk, Pratt responded as saying due to the current measures put in place as a result of the deadly Coronavirus disease, sensitizers will be unable to reach other parts of the country, adding this year's celebration of WorldMalaria Day is in different approach.
According to him, thisthis year's approach was designed toprovide major awareness about the threat of malaria and COVID-19 to familieswithin thirty (30) communities.
As part of the efforts to ensure that these awareness messages reach the targeted communities, the NMCP has recruited about 90 volunteers who will be able to reach 15 households per day in six days.
The NMCP Director also stated that during the awareness, volunteers will distribute flyers both on Malariaprevention and the effect of COVID-19 on the human body.
Pratt said malaria is the common cause of deaths among children and it is the reason most people go to clinics /hospitals.
Discussing more onmalaria, heexplained that malaria is a sickness you can get frommosquito bite mostly during evening or night hours. He further explained that when a mosquito bites a person with malaria it transfers the sickness to another person through bites.
Mr. Pratt also pointed out that the best way toprevent malaria is to sleep under treated mosquito nets. "These treated mosquito nets aresafe and not harmful to anyone, even children and pregnant women," he added.Meanwhile, this year's World Malaria Day celebration is being sponsored by the Government of Liberia and partners.