The National Malaria Control Program (NMCP) at the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare has launched activities marking the celebration the 2009 World Malaria Day in Monrovia.
NMCP Manager, Dr. Joel J. Jones said as part of this year’s celebration, 14 days of malaria awareness will be carried out in communities across the country in order to sensitize the people about the danger of malaria.
“Malaria is a disease that is killing and making a lot of our people sick, and is still being considered in some quarters as a common disease; but I tell you that malaria is not a common disease, because 38% of patients that visit hospital are diagnosed with malaria”, the NMCP boss noted.
Dr. Jones furthered that Liberia is now over the half way benchmark for the achieving the Abuja Declaration on increasing coverage of access to treatment, coverage of treatment for pregnant women and preventing spread of the disease by using insecticides mosquito bed nets for children under five years.
He said the nomenclature of “Africa Malaria Day” was changed by Presidents of the 60th World Health Assembly to World Malaria Day, in order to have day given global importance.
For his part, Dr. Moses Pewue, who launched the 14-day activities for Dr. Bernice T. Dahn, Chief Medical Officer and Deputy Minister said, it is time to eradicate malaria out of Liberia, as was done in the case of polio.
Deputy Minister Pewue noted that, if malaria is not robustly and collectively eradicated out of Liberia, the disease might claim the lives of every Liberian.
He than expressed the ministry’s appreciation to partnering organizations that are help the Ministry in delivering health services to the Liberian people.
This years’ celebration is supported by Mentor, Liberia National Red Cross Society (LNRC) and other partners including those in the healthcare delivery sector.