The Director of Health Services at Ministry of Health and Social Welfare Dr. Mamady Cham has said that the fight against malaria can played a key role in reducing maternal mortality and morbidity.
According to him, achieving universal strategies to roll back malaria (RBM) is a way of reducing child mortality and morbidity rates in the world as well as working towards meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) target of 2015.
Dr. Cham was speaking Wednesday, April 20, 2011 at the CIAM-NMCP Conference Hall at Kanifing during a press briefing on World Malaria Day (WMD) Commemoration in The Gambia.
The Commemoration is slated for 25th April, 2011 in North Bank Region, and it will also be marked by a variety of activities.
Attended by partners in the RBM initiative, Dr. Cham said the private sector and the media need to inform the wider community in helping countries in their delivery of good health care services.
He admitted that as a government, they cannot single-handedly win the battle against malaria without the active involvement of the private sector. He said tremendous gains have been registered over the years, but still there are some outstanding challenges that need to be overcome.
The theme for the fourth World Malaria Day 2011 is “Achieving Progress and Impact”, which he said heralds the international community renewed efforts to makes progress towards zero malaria deaths by 2015.
When he took his turn, the Deputy Programme Manger, National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP) Mr. Balla Kandeh noted that the RBM initiative is aimed at building partnership to mobilize global support and resources to reduce the malaria burden.
“This partnership has been, and remains to be strong in The Gambia, but there is the need and plenty of room for other sectors to join and help us all combat malaria,” he said, while calling on the private sector in the country to come forth and join the fight against the killer disease.
According to him, this year, the global malaria community will report on the progress made to save a million lives through the delivery of malaria interventions such as long lasting insecticide nets (LLINs), diagnostic test (RDTs), anti-malarial drugs and Indoor Resident Spraying and pave the way toward virtually ending malaria deaths by 2015.
He said: “The Day represents a chance for all of us to make a difference be it a government, company or an individual, to roll back malaria and help generate broad gains in health and human development.”
Mr. Momodou Gassama, who spoke on behalf of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative Dr. Thomas Sukwa, he said the event symbolizes and underscores the multi-sectoral and multi disciplinary push, which is already gaining momentum across the globe including The Gambia.
He said that the decade has witnessed both successes and challenges in malaria prevention and control at global, regional and country levels. “Decrease in malaria burden have been observed in all WHO regions, with the largest recorded in the European Region, and Sub-Saharan Africa, despite being host to 90 percent of the world’s total malaria deaths, it has also made significant inroads against the epidemic,” he said.Source - The Voice