Malaria is endemic in Cameroon, where it is the leading cause of morbidity (41%) and mortality (43%). According to the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP), malaria accounts for 50–56% of morbidity and 40% of deaths among children less than five years of age. Fifty-nine percent of hospitalizations during pregnancy are due to malaria, and can result in adverse birth outcomes and maternal death.
Malaria constitutes a heavy burden on the health care system and economy. It is responsible for 40–50% of medical consultations and 30–47% of hospitalizations, as well as 40% of household health expenditure and 26% of work absenteeism. The consequent health care costs and loss in productivity result in an estimated annual loss of 1.3% GDP to the national economy. Patterns of malaria transmission vary throughout the country, with stable perennial transmission in the south, unstable seasonal transmission in the mountainous Adamawa region, and short seasonal transmission in the north.
Despite the implementation of malaria prevention and treatment strategies since 2002, coverage of malaria services and commodities lag behind goals for universal coverage. Only 21% of children under five years of age sleep under insecticide-treated bed nets (ITNs), and the percentage of pregnant women receiving correct and timely interim preventive treatment (IPTp) is estimated to be 26%.
The goal of the NMCP is to halve the burden of malaria by the end of 2014 through scale up of malaria interventions. The programme is supported by two Global Fund grants and implemented by the NMCP in partnership with Plan International.
The grants support the mass distribution of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs), promotion of the use of rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) prior to treatment, and provision of artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACTs) at community level and in health facilities. Other activities include behaviour change communication (BCC) through mass media broadcasts and education of media practitioners and community trainers about malaria control.
The key objectives to be achieved by 2015 are:
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UNITAID is dedicating 34 million USD on reducing malaria case-fatality through its project rolling out over the coming weeks to treat the severest cases.Read more
There was frenzy along some major streets in the capital city, Yaounde, last Saturday April 19 as the population rushed for flyers, T-shirts and messages on malaria prevention distributed by a one-kilometre long caravan.Read more
Efforts to stop millions children dying needlessly from malaria must continue, children's organisation Plan International has warned.Read more
In December, Malaria No More Cameroon teamed up with one of our K.O. Palu Ambassadors to host a celebration for 200 young orphans called “Par Ici Noel” (Over here it’s Christmas) in the capital city of Yaoundé. The event was organized by MUFERED, a Cameroon-based women’s organization that supports disadvantaged children, in partnership with a basketball association. This year, Dorette, K.O Palu Ambassador and President of MUFERED, invited Malaria No…Read more
In 2008, the government of Cameroon engaged a policy-swing designed to irreversibly roll back malaria. The strategy entailed providing free treatment for simple malaria for under-fives and pregnant women, a countrywide gratis distribution of treated bednets, as well as increased consciousness campaigns. Initially, the Ministry of Health appeared to be winning the war against the bloodthirsty mosquitoes that have hemmed Cameroon among malaria endemic territories over the years. In fact,…Read more