Over 90,000 residents of Akwa Ibom State have over the past six years benefitted from malaria prevention service. Africare, an international non-governmental organization, has said. The Africare Director, Malaria Programme, Dr. Patrick Adah who disclosed this recently in Ibeno Local Government Area of the state during a malaria sensitisation outreach tagged ‘Christmas in Good Health’, said the organisation has introduced a device for testing malaria infection called Deki Reader in 30 health facilities in Eket and Ibeno local government areas of the state. According to him, the services rendered in two local government areas include regular sensitisation campaigns on malaria, testing, provision of malaria drugs and other commodities. “The Deki Reader is more effective and reliable than the rapid diagnostic test (RDT) currently in use in Nigeria. The device has the advantage of eliminating human error in the reading of test results,” he further explained. The director maintained that the test results captured by Deki Reader could be accessed by authorised personnel of the Ministry of Health and other stakeholders in the elimination of malaria in Nigeria. Uhomoibhi noted that funding from development partners for malaria control had decreased over the years and called on private sector in Nigeria to invest in malaria control. “We encourage the private sector to step up funding for malaria prevention programme to maintain healthy workforce in the country,” Uhomoibhi said.She appealed to ExxonMobil to increase its support to Africare so as to cover the 31 local government areas of the state. Speaking on the occasion, the chairman of Ibeno Local Government Area, Mr. Ifum Henry, thanked ExxonMobil and Africare for partnering to reduce the prevalence of malaria in the area. Henry promised to support the activities of Africare in the area as far as healthcare delivery was concerned.

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