Nets for All: Nigeria leads the fight against Malaria

Uploaded by ukdfid on 25.06.2010

Nets for all: Nigeria leads the fight against malaria
A child dies from malaria every 30 seconds. It is one of the world’s biggest killers.
Nowhere in Africa is the burden of malaria greater than in Nigeria.
Dr Ebere Anyachukwu, Health Advisor, Department for International Development (DFID)
Nigeria probably has the most serious malaria problem in Africa.
Onno Ruhl, Country Director, The World Bank
One in three of every children to die prematurely in Nigeria, die as a consequence of malaria.
Solvi Taraldsen, Health Advisor, DFID Northern Nigeria Office
Around 50% of Nigerians will have one check at least of malaria each year.
This is Dawakin Tofa a village in Kano state, one of the most affected areas in the country.
Under the Roll Back Malaria partnership, Nigeria’s National Malaria Control programme, the UK’s
Department for International Development (DFID) with its SuNMaP project and other partners
including the World Bank, UNICEF and USAID, the US Agency for International Development,
have come together to take a stand against the disease.
Kano has become a key battleground in the fight against malaria.
Dr Anyachukwu: This is the first time that Nigeria is really making a concerted effort
to try to address this problem.
Mariam lives in Dawakin Tofa with her four children and six grandchildren.
For Mariam and her family, malaria is a constant worry.
They have no practical protection from the mosquitoes that carry the disease and so every
night they risk being bitten and infected. Today, that is all going to change.
Dr Anyachukwu: DFID has a large malaria programme called SuNMaP, they support the national malaria
programme. Its rule is to provide bed nets for the campaign.
SuNMaP and partners are supplying long lasting insecticidal nets to be distributed to households
across Nigeria. The campaign is commencing in key affected
states, including Kano, and will eventually roll out across the whole country.
Solvi: Every household will receive two nets by the end of 2010, which means that they
have 18 months to distribute 63 million nets which has been identified as the need for
All around Kano state the nets are being stockpiled ready for distribution and a large event is
held to mark the launch of the campaign. As part of an unprecedented communications
push, house to house health mobilisers visit every village to ensure that everyone knows
what they need to do.
Ms ChiNow Amajoh, Head, Integrated Vector Management Branch, National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP)
We’re going from house to house with the
net cards, we are ensuring that more people will have access to this.
By the end of 2010 we’ll be sure that at least 80% of people in every community,
in every settlement is in this.
Each household is given a net card which they will exchange for two free nets at the collection points.
As part of their SuNMaP training, the mobilisers
must make sure that each household knows when and where to collect their nets.
Each house is marked to show that the mobilisers have paid a visit.
Dr Umar Faruk, Behavioural Change Communication Consultant
We send messages along with the house to house mobilisers; take cover from malaria, use the
net – it’s very simple.
Today, Mariam is to collect the mosquito nets that will protect her family from the deadly
malaria carrying mosquitoes. Word has got around and there is already a
large queue. Everyone is excited. These precious nets will
make a huge difference to their lives. As soon as she arrives home, Mariam hangs
her nets outside for 24 hours as she has been instructed.
This is to prevent possible allergic reactions to the insecticide and Mariam is not alone.
All across Kano state, women are hanging their nets in preparation for use.
Once the 24 hours are up, the nets can safely be used.
Mariam decides to keep one and give the other to her eldest grandaughter as a wedding gift.
It means that the next generation of Mariam’s
family will have the best protection right from the start and with it the best chance
of living full and healthy lives.
Haj Aisha Isyaku Kiru, Hon Commissioner, Ministry of Health
Mortality rates are going to come down and therefore people who wouldn’t want to have
too many children because they feel that half of them might die of malaria.
DFID SuNMaP programme will help to make Nigeria the first country in Africa to offer universal
coverage of mosquito nets to its entire population. It is crucial to ensure that the programme is sustainable.
Onno: The challenge is not to get somebody to sleep under a net the day after the campaign.
The challenge is that they still sleep under the net two years after the campaign.
Dr Anyachukwu: We can start developing a system by which nets are constantly being
released into the communities on a routine basis.
No single organisation can do this alone. The mosquito net programme in Nigeria is the
result of a vast range of different organisations, NGOs and faith groups coming together as a
cohesive partnership to support the Nigerian Government in taking a stand against malaria.
Ms Amajoh: All of these programmes and the implementers are working together.
Onno: That everybody feels that we are doing this together, there is a good team spirit,
we all meet each other when we go to the field.
Solvi: It’s not often that we combine such a skill together.
Ultimately, tackling malaria in Nigeria is the only way to tackle it on a global scale
and meet the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.
Ms Amajoh: The goals four, five and six are direct but goal one says elimination of extreme
poverty and hunger. Malaria is a disease of poverty, it makes
the poor poorer. This is very, very encouraging.
The aim now for Nigeria and SuNMaP is to roll out the scheme beyond the border of Kano state
so that the whole country will benefit. Millions of lives will be saved.
Dr Anyachukwu: It can be done. It can be done.
Other countries have done it and Nigeria is doing it.
And if it can be done in Nigeria it can be done anywhere else.
Partners working with SuNMaP in Nigeria include Core Partners:
Malaria Consortium GRID Consulting
Health Partners International
Partners: Federation of Muslim Women's Association of Nigeria
Health Reform Foundation of Nigeria
Christian Health Association of Nigeria CHAN Medi Pharm
Centre for Communication Programmes Nigeria
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health - Centre for Communication Programmes
Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria
Health Policy Research Group, Nigeria University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine