Uganda's Ntungamo District tackles through various interventions
Malaria remains the leading condition among all outpatient diagnoses for all ages, accounting for 32.1 per cent of all OPD attendances in Uganda
Uganda has been grappling with a malaria crisis for years. Despite concerted efforts by health workers, malaria remains the leading condition among all outpatient diagnoses (OPD) for all ages, accounting for 32.1 per cent of all OPD attendances.
The recent Annual Health Sector Performance Report for the financial year 2021/2023 by Uganda's Ministry of Health revealed that the number of malaria cases increased by 5 per cent from 13,604,703 in 2020/21 to 14,904,773 in 2021/22, and malaria incidence increased from 302/1000 to 317/1000 population. However, there is a silver lining. The number of malaria deaths reported in Uganda reduced by 15 per cent from 5,017 to 4,245.
While malaria is spread across Uganda, Ntungamo District remains one of the most affected districts, recording as high as 10671 cases in January 2022. Despite this, the health workers in the district remain resolved to bring these numbers low.
Various interventions including Integrated Case Management, capacity building of health workers and VHTs, use of technology, provision of insecticide-treated mosquito nets, clearing of bushes, and improved diagnosis using the malaria Rapid Diagnostic Tests and case management using Coartem, an anti-malarial drug that kills the malaria parasite in the body, for the treatment of mild cases, have been put in place to combat malaria in the district.
Despite the challenges, health workers in Ntungamo District are optimistic about the future. With concerted efforts, they believe that they can win the fight against malaria and improve the health outcomes of the people in their community.